2019-20Top 16Round 3
January 21, 2020 CET: 20:00
Local time: 20:00 POLIESPORTIU D'ANDORRA

Unicaja gets critical road win

Unicaja Malaga took a major step towards reaching the playoffs from Top 16 Group H by downing MoraBanc Andorra 88-92 on the road on Tuesday. Unicaja improved to 2-1 in the group standings while Andorra dropped to 0-3. Josh Adams led the winners with 22 points. Jaime Fernandez added 13, Dario Brizuela and Carlos Suarez 12 each, and Alberto Diaz 10 for Unicaja. Clevin Hannah led Andorra with 21 points. Frantz Massenat added 15, David Jelinek 13 and Tyson Perez 11 for the hosts. Massenat and Jeremy Senglin shined early to give Andorra a double-digit lead, 22-11, after 10 minutes. Fernandez and an outstanding Adams brought Unicaja within 40-37 at halftime. Adams kept pacing Unicaja and allowed his team to tie the game, 56-56, late in the third quarter. Hannah and Perez restored a 70-66 Andorra lead after 30 minutes. Unicaja improved its defense while Diaz and Brizuela combined for their team's first 18 points in the fourth quarter, putting the guests ahead for good, 81-84, with 2 minutes left. Free throw accuracy allowed Unicaja to stay ahead until the final buzzer.

David Walker and Massenat each struck from beyond the arc to give Andorra an early 6-0 lead. Fernandez stepped up with a layup-plus-foul and Axel Toupane added a driving basket as Unicaja pulled within 10-5. Hannah matched Toupane's alley-oop layup with a fastbreak basket and Nacho Llovet scored down low for a 14-7 Andorra lead. Adam Waczynski and Suarez scored for Unicaja but Jelinek and Senglin each buried a three-pointer to make it 22-11 after 10 minutes. Volodymyr Gerun and Llovet exchanged layups early in the second quarter, then Waczynski scored in penetration for a 24-15 score. Fernandez sank a triple but Perez and Dejan Todorovic lifted Andorra up by 29-18 Andorra. Unicaja found its offense again as Fernandez hit a fastbreak layup, Deon Thompson scored inside and Adams reeled off 8 points to make it 31-30. Massenat rescued Andorra with 5 points, getting help from Jelinek and Dejan Musli to keep their team ahead 40-37 at halftime. Adams finished a three-point play and added a jumper for a 42-42 tie right after the break. Andorra found Musli twice down low in a 7-0 run that Hannah capped with a three-point play. Ruben Guerrero inside and red-hot Adams from distance kept Unicaja within 53-51. Massenat and Thompson joined the three-point shootout before Adams dunked to tie again, 56-56. Andorra found its go-to guy in Hannah, who fed Jelinek for a fastbreak dunk and added 6 quick points before Perez struck from deep for a 67-60 lead. Waczynski's triple and Fernandez's layup kept Unicaja within 70-66 after 30 minutes. Andorra struggled against the guests' 3-2 zone defense early in the fourth quarter, allowing the first points by Diaz and Brizuela to give Unicaja its first lead, 72-74. Diaz and Brizuela kept pacing Unicaja but Perez dunked in traffic and Jelinek hit consecutive three-pointers as Andorra regained the lead at 81-79. Brizuela's free throws preceded a corner triple by Diaz for a 81-84 Unicaja lead with 2 minutes to go. Gerun, Diaz and Adams sealed the outcome from the foul line, 83-88, with 16.2 seconds left.

Pivotal performer

Adams kept Unicaja's options alive in the first three quarters, keeping the guests close enough to make the difference in the fourth. He finished with 22 points by making 5 of 9 two-pointers, 2 of 6 threes and 6 of 7 free throws. He added 2 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and 4 fouls drawn for a PIR of 22.

Game-changing moment

Jelinek hit consecutive three-point shots to put Andorra ahead for the last time at 81-79. Brizuela hit free throws and Diaz a corner triple the flipped the scoreboard for Unicaja at 81-84. The visitors proceeded to make 8 of 10 foul shots in the final 2 minutes to walk away with a win.

Stellar stat

The game went down to details, and those were missed free throws and turnovers. Unicaja made 23 of 26 free throws (88.5%) and Andorra only hit 14 of 22 (63.6%). Unicaja limited turnovers to just 10 and Andorra picked up as many as 15.

Did you notice?

Diaz and Brizuela had gone scoreless for 30 minutes, but combined for 22 of their team's 26 fourth-quarter points, suppling Unicaja's first lead and the eventual victory.

Next game:

These teams will face each other again in Round 3 at Palacio de Deportes Jose Maria Martin Carpena in Malaga next Wednesday.

Josh Adams - Unicaja Malaga  (Photo Martin Imatge) - EC19
Tuesday, January 21, 2020
Eurocupbasketball.com
Referees: MANTYLA, PETRI; ROSSI, MICHELE; THEPENIER, HUGUES
Attendance: 2149 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
MoraBanc Andorra22183018
Unicaja Malaga11262926
End of Quarter1234
MoraBanc Andorra22407088
Unicaja Malaga11376692
MoraBanc Andorra
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 PEREZ, TYSON 24:29 11 3/3 1/1 2/5 1 4 5 3 1 2     4 4 15
5 SY, BANDJA 15:31     0/1 0/2 1   1 2 1 2 1   2 1 -1
9 LLOVET, NACHO 21:14 6 2/2   2/2 2 2 4 2 1 1 1   3 1 11
10 MASSENAT, FRANTZ 19:07 15 3/5 3/4         1         5 1 9
11 HANNAH, CLEVIN 26:14 21 4/6 2/5 7/7 1 2 3 3 1 1     2 5 25
15 KRAMPELJ, MARTIN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
20 TODOROVIC, DEJAN 22:29 5 1/1 1/8     3 3 2   3     1   -1
23 WALKER, DAVID 18:36 5 0/2 1/4 2/2   3 3 1   2   1   1 2
24 COLOM, GUILLEM DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
25 JELINEK, DAVID 19:37 13 2/4 3/4 0/1   1 1 1   1     5 2 7
30 SENGLIN, JEREMY 14:02 6 1/3 1/3 1/2   1 1     1       1 2
44 MUSLI, DEJAN 18:41 6 3/4   0/1 1 5 6 2   2     4 9 15
Team           2 2 4               4
Totals 200:00 88 19/30 12/30 14/22 8 23 31 17 4 15 2 1 26 25 88
        63.3% 40% 63.6%
Head coach: NAVARRO, IBON
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Unicaja Malaga
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
2 THOMPSON, DEON 27:11 5 1/5 1/3   2 4 6 3   1     4 3 6
3 FERNANDEZ, JAIME 19:06 13 4/5 1/5 2/3 1   1 4   2     2 4 12
6 TOUPANE, AXEL 15:43 4 2/2 0/1           1 2         2
8 BRIZUELA, DARIO 24:56 12 1/4 2/7 4/4       2   2     1 2 5
9 DIAZ, ALBERTO 20:54 10 1/1 2/3 2/2 2 4 6 1   1     3 4 16
14 ADAMS, JOSH 22:19 22 5/9 2/6 6/7   2 2 5 2     1 3 4 22
21 WACZYNSKI, ADAM 17:07 7 1/1 1/2 2/2   1 1     2     3 1 3
28 TAMBA, ISMAEL DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
32 GUERRERO, RUBEN 14:56 4 2/4     4 3 7   1     1 4   5
43 SUAREZ, CARLOS 22:44 12   2/7 6/6   4 4   1       2 5 15
52 GERUN, VOLODYMYR 15:04 3 1/2   1/2 1 2 3 1 1   1   4 3 6
Team           4 6 10               10
Totals 200:00 92 18/33 11/34 23/26 14 26 40 16 6 10 1 2 26 26 102
        54.5% 32.4% 88.5%
Head coach: CASIMIRO, LUIS

Head Coaches

NAVARRO, IBON
MoraBanc Andorra
"First of all, congratulations to Unicaja for the victory. They played a great second half, controlling the game and the tempo, with good shot selection. Despite our good job, they deserved to win not just because of their defense, but because of the details that are important in close games. The game was conditioned in the first half by their offensive rebounds. We know it is one of Unicaja's main weapons and we talked a lot about it. We have to keep working and improve, but this is one of the things Unicaja does well, and that allows them to control the rhythm of a lot of games. We had problems in the second half but improved on this. The team was solid in the third quarter and we arrived in the final minutes, in which our shooters didn't hit open shots. Alberto Diaz had a critical three-pointer and, of course, we missed too many free throws. In the opening 12 games, we were the best shooting team from the free throw line in the Spanish League, with the same players. These are the same players. None of our players missed 6 free throws or anything like that. It is a matter of concentration, confidence, shooting mechanics, but these are the same players who led the Spanish League in free throws. Right now, we would need to win all three games left and get all the tie-break advantages. We cannot talk about winning three games when we haven't won any. We have to recharge our batteries, play in the Spanish League and prepare to face Unicaja again."
CASIMIRO, LUIS
Unicaja Malaga
"We played well for three quarters, putting out the energy and intensity that the game required. It was much harder for us in the first quarter, but after that, we managed to keep it close, and in that sense, it was a more balanced, competitive game. We had a good run in the second quarter, and I believe that the fourth quarter was the key, the way we came out. We stopped them with our defense, and I think we did a great job at rebounding, both on offense and defense. That allowed us to score, gain confidence and reach the final minutes with the lead after trailing for the rest of the game. That gave us what we needed to win the game. The Top 16 is a short group stage but it is very balanced. I wish we could have avoided Clevin Hannah's last three-point shot [for tie-breaking purposes]. There are three games left and MoraBanc is now a bit behind, but we cannot discard them at all. The team did a great job last season, reaching the semifinals, so for us this is an important win. We could have won in Bursa, were one defense or one offense away. In this group, getting a road win is great if you are also able to win at home. We managed to do this but there are three games left and we have to see what happens next."

Players

ADAMS, JOSH
Unicaja Malaga
"We would have liked to win by more but Andorra is a very good team and this is a tough place to play. We are extremely excited to get a win here and to continue to play well in the EuroCup. It is a tough group and now we have two wins. We have to keep watching and keep focusing on winning the next game."
FERNANDEZ, JAIME
Unicaja Malaga
"We know that Andorra is a tough team to beat, especially in its home. The first quarter was not easy, but we stayed in the game, played hard and deserved the win. We are happy with the win. We know that this game was really important, because it is a road win and now Andorra has it difficult. For us, it is a good win, very important."