BC Khimki Moscow Region reached the Turkish Airlines Euroleague second Qualifying Round by downing Pepsi Caserta 85-66 in Game 2 of their two-way series on Friday. Khimki swept the series and is now set to face Budivelnyk in the next round. Meanwhile, Caserta will play the 2010-11 Eurocup. Ben Eze led the winners with 14 points. Fedor Dmitriev and Keith Langford each added 13 while Vitaly Fridzon and Kresimir Loncar had 10 apiece for Khimki. Ebi Ere led Caserta with 28 points. Jumaine Jones added 11 for the guests, that trailed 20-19 after 10 minutes. A great team effort - 11 players scored in the opening 16 minutes - and an outstanding Zoran Planinic allowed Khimki to boost its margin to 47-32 at halftime. Ere took over after the break and singlehandedly brought Caserta within 52-42 after 30 minutes. Dmitriev and Loncar allowed Khimki to seal the outcome long before the final buzzer.
Langford and Sergey Monya got Khimki going with back-to-back driving layups, as the hosts placed Vadim Panin in the starting lineup to guard Jones. Timmy Bowers sank a triple but Eze and Planinic soon gave Khimki a 8-3 lead. Ere struck from downtown and a fast break layup by Bowers tied it at 8-8. Caserta dominated the boards and Ere followed Jones' alleyoop layup with a triple for an 11-13 lead. Eze had all points, including a wild dunk, in a 6-1 run to give Khimki a 17-14 edge. Lukasz Koszarek nailed a corner three-pointer but Thomas Kelati and Fridzon restored a 20-19 Khimki lead after 10 minutes. Loncar scored down low early in the second quarter, igniting a 5-0 run that Fridzon capped with a fast break layup, good for a 25-19 Khimki edge. Aaron Doornekamp followed free throws with a reverse layup but Raul Lopez and Dmitriev kept Khimki out of trouble, 31-24. Jones stepped up with a long jumper that Dmitriev betterd with a bomb from downtown. Aleksey Savrasenko soon added a layup but Bowers nailed a triple to keep Caserta within 36-30. Viacheslav Zaytsev joined the three-point shootout - becoming the 11th Khimki player to score in just 16 minutes - and a fast break layup by Dmitriev forced Caserta to call timeout at 41-30. Ere tried to change things for Caserta but Langford and Planinic fueled a 6-0 run that broke the series open, 47-32, at halftime.
Ere tried to ignite the guests's comeback with a turnaround jumper right after the break. Eze buried a mid-range shot and Planinic scored in transition to
keep Khimki out of trouble, 51-36. Caserta tried to speed up the game tempo but kept missing open shots. Kelati nailed a long triple and a tip-in by Fridzon boosted the hosts' lead to 56-38. Ere followed a floating jumper with a driving layup but he didn't find much help around. Even with that, he sank a catch-and-shoot triple, added a power layup and Jones took over with an acrobatic put-back basket that made Khimki call timeout at 62-49. Ere stayed on fire with a wild layup-plus-foul that fixed the score at 62-52 after 30 minutes. Loncar followed a turnaround jumper with a triple to boost the hosts' lead to 67-52 with 8 minutes left. Doornekamp stepped up for Caseta but an outstanding Dmitriev sealed the outcome, 72-56, with 6 minutes to go. Caserta kept trying but everything was said and done already. All Khimki fans were celebrating that their team got one step closer to the 2010-11 Euroleague. Meanwhile, Caserta will keep playing continental basketball for the first time since 1993 in the Eurocup.
Friday, September 24, 2010