Olimpija charges into the Last 32
Union Olimpija Ljubljana hit 14 triples and qualified for the Last 32 with a resounding 89-67 win over its Adriatic League rival Szolnoki Olaj on Wednesday. Olimpija improved to 5-3 with a season sweep of Olaj, and has also pulled Zenit St. Petersburg into the Last 32 with it from Group D. Olimpija put together a 22-2 run in the final 8 minutes of the second quarter, opening up 51-31 halftime lead, and it never looked back. Lead reached 25 points in the third quarter with the hosts paced by Paolo Marinelli, who hit 6 of 7 triples for 18 points, and Marko Marinovic who had 18 points with 7 assists. Alen Omic collected 13 points and 9 rebounds, Gregor Hrovat netted 12, and Klemen Prepelic 11 in victory. Sergerio Gipson scored 14 for the visitors, while Stefan Sinovec and Krisztian Wittmann each had 13 for Olaj which dropped to 2-6 and is eliminated.
In the early going two teams were going basket-for-basket. Olaj kept the slim leads with threes from Peter Lorant and Sinovec, while Marinovic scored 8 points, including a pair of triples that gave the hosts 17-16. A three-pointer from Marinelli made it 25-19 late in the first, but Wittmann’s triple to start the second gave the visitors 25-26. However, Olimpija soon went on a 14-0 run, keeping Olaj without a single point for almost 6 minutes during which Marinellis hit two triples, and Omic scored 4 points for 43-29. Margin continued to rise in the final 2 minutes of the half, with Hrovat racing for a fastbreak layup, and Marinelli knocking down his fourth three in as many attempts for 51-31 halftime lead. After the break, Marton Bader scored 6 straight points for Olaj, but Olimpija answered with a run of its own as Klemen Prepelic hit twice from downtown, Hrovat also nailed a triple, and lead reached 67-42. Olimpija cruised after that, hitting more from long range, but so did Sinovec and Wittmann for Olaj. The margin broke 25-point barrier with 4 minutes to go, 85-59, before the hosts closed the game out.
Wednesday, December 3, 2014