Valencia thrashes Baskonia
Valencia Basket recorded its second consecutive win by downing KIROLBET Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz 105-77 at La Fonteta on Tuesday. Both teams now have a 6-8 record in the standings. Bojan Dubljevic led the winners with a career-high 25 points. Alberto Abalde added 16, Jordan Loyd and Sam Van Rossom each scored 13 and Mike Tobey 10 for Valencia. Shavon Shields paced Baskonia with 22 points, Toko Shengelia added 15 and Luca Vildoza 12 for the visitors. Dubljevic was unstoppable in the second quarter and got help from Abalde and Van Rossom to make it a double-digit game, 46-36, at halftime. Dubljevic and Abalde kept pacing Valencia after the break, but Shields kept Baskonia within 69-58 after 30 minutes. Little changed after that, as Valencia kept a safe margin throughout the fourth quarter.
Quino Colom hit a triple and found Dubljevic for another bomb from downtown that gave Valencia a 6-2 lead. Dubljevic hit a jump hook, but Nik Stauskas and Shengelia fueled a 0-6 run which Henry capped with a jumper to tie it at 8-8. Dubljevic and Shengelia traded layups and then Vildoza struck from beyond the arc to give Baskonia its first lead, 10-13. Youssoupha Fall scored down low, Shengelia finished a broken play with a layup and Henry added a big basket in transition that caused Valencia to call timeout at 12-19. Tobey hit a jumper and Loyd added a fast break layup and a buzzer-beating three-pointer that tied the game again, 19-19, after 10 minutes. Louis Labyerie and Van Rossom each hit a triple early in the second quarter, capping a 13-0 run that gave Valencia a 25-19 lead. Shengelia answered from downtown and soon added a reverse layup to bring Baskonia within 27-26. Van Rossom scored in transition and Abalde banked in a close shot to give Valencia fresh air at 31-26. Dubljevic took over with a three-point play and drew a couple of shooting fouls, allowing the hosts to get a 37-30 lead. Vildoza followed a turnaround jumper with a driving layup, but Dubljevic and Abalde each struck from downtown, giving Valencia a 46-36 advantage at halftime.
Dubljevic and Vildoza traded three-pointers right after the break. Then San Emeterio boosted Valencia's lead to 51-40. Maurice Ndour ignited the crowd with an alley-oop dunk and Van Rossom buried a corner triple that broke the game open, 58-42. Ilimane Diop downed a jumper and then Shields added 8 quick points, including a couple of triples, to bring Baskonia within 63-52. Tobey stepped up with a put-back slam that a red-hot Shields bettered with a bomb from downtown. Abalde and Achille Polonara joined the three-point shootout to fix the score at 69-58 after 30 minutes. Tobey found a layup-plus-foul early in the fourth quarter and Loyd added a big triple that set a 75-60 Valencia lead. Abalde scored in penetration, but Henry and Shields fueled a 1-8 run highlighted by Polonara's put-back dunk. A three-point play by Shields brought Baskonia within single digits, 80-71, with over 6 minutes left. Abalde, Dubljevic, Van Rossom and Loyd buried a three-pointer apiece to keep the hosts out of trouble, 92-73, and Baskonia never recovered.
Abalde had a fantastic game off the bench at both ends of the floor. He finished the game with 16 points on 2-of-4 two-point shooting, 3-of-4 from downtown and 3-of-3 free throws, plus 2 rebounds, 2 assists, a steal and 3 fouls drawn for a PIR of 20.
Valencia trailed 12-19 late in the first quarter but fixed its offense through its second unit. Loyd - from way downtown at the first-quarter buzzer - Labeyrie and Van Rossom each struck from downtown in a 13-0 run that put Valencia ahead for good, 25-19. Baskonia never regained momentum in the game.
Valencia took much better care of the ball, dishing 27 assists and committing just 6 turnovers. That is an assist-to-turnover ratio of 4.5-to-1 is the second-best in the EuroLeague this season - Anadolu Efes Istanbul had a ratio of 4.67 against ALBA Berlin with 28 assists and 6 turnovers. Baskonia had only 10 assists and made 16 turnovers.
Did you notice?
Valencia set a new club record for most three-point shots made, 17, against Baskonia in this game. The previous record was 16 against Zenit St Petersburg earlier this season. It also tied the best mark for a EuroLeague team this season - Real Madrid, CSKA Moscow and Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv previously hit 17 three-point shots in the 2019-20 campaign.
Both teams return to EuroLeague action on Thursday, December 19. Valencia visits AX Armani Exchange Milan, while Baskonia hosts Real Madrid.
Tuesday, December 17, 2019