Efes outguns ALBA in OT
After neither team led by more than 7 points through 45 minutes, Anadolu Efes Istanbul registered its first win of the new season with an exciting 106-105 overtime decision against visiting ALBA Berlin on Friday at Sinan Erdem Dome. Both teams now hold 1-1 records. The teams treaded leads throughout the game, with ALBA hitting a club-record 14 three-point shots, but the backcourt duo of Shane Larkin and Vaislije Micic guided Efes to victory. Larkin finished with 26 points on 5-for-9 three-point shooting along with 5 assists and 5 rebounds. Micic had 23 points and career highs of 13 assists and 4 steals. Bryant Dunston scored 18 points, Tibor Pleiss had 16, and Alec Peters scored 14 in victory. For ALBA, Rokas Giedraitis netted 21 points, Luke Sikma had 15 plus 8 rebounds, and Tyler Cavanaugh collected 14 points and 8 rebounds. Niels Giffey added 13 points, Landry Nnoko and Peyton Siva 10 apiece. Martin Hermannsson dished 11 assist before exiting the game with an injury in the third quarter.
ALBA was hot from the start, with Sikma, Giedraitis and Jonas Mattisseck all hitting from long range in the first 5 minutes. Peters and Larkin hit from deep for Efes, but back-to-back triples from Tyler Cavanaugh had ALBA shooting 5-of-6 from long range and leading 16-23. Larkin scored 7 more points before the end of the quarter, including a triple, and Bryant Dunston's dunk put Efes in front 27-25 after 10 minutes. The teams continued trading blows in the second quarter, with Giedraitis scoring from close range and long range to make it 34-36. He scored a couple more buckets, but Tibor Pleiss inside and Micic from the corner helped the hosts take a 43-40 advantage into halftime. Both teams upped the tempo again in the third quarter. Larkin nailed a pair of triples and Micic hit a corner three for the hosts, but Sikma and Giedraitis matched them from distance to tie it at 57-57 midway through the third. With both teams putting up points at will, Peters and Dunston scored on one end, while Nnoko and Cavanaugh combined for 11 points on the other to give ALBA 65-68. Cavanaugh's triple made it 69-72 at the end of the third, before baskets from Niels Giffey, and triples by Siva and Mattisseck helped the visitors go up 80-86 in the fourth. Pleiss and Dunston fueled a 7-0 run to put Efes back in front but there were four more lead changes in the final 3 minutes before they settled for a 95-95 tie going into overtime. Larkin opened the extra session by scoring the first 7 points for Efes, including a triple, for a 104-99 lead. Sikma and Siva gave ALBA hope, but Micic made both free throws before ALBA ran out of time at the end.
It is hard to win when an opponent hits 14 triples on 46.7% shooting, has a hefty 41-29 rebounding advantage, and commits only 7 turnovers. However, Efes did just that.
Tibor Pleiss had a great game off the bench against a team from his native country. Pleiss had 16 points on 6-for-7 two-point shooting in just 14:29 on the floor, playing a key role late in the third and early in the fourth quarter.
Oh, that third quarter!
ALBA won the third quarter 32-26 after 10 minutes in which both teams combined to make 24 of 34 field goal attempts. ALBA had 11 assists and Efes 8 in the third quarter alone.
This was the first time ALBA scored 100 or more points in a EuroLeague game this century. ALBA also set EuroLeague club record for PIR (127), assists (28) and three-pointers made (14).
First OT of the season
This was the first overtime game of this season, and the first overtime game in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague since Round 21 of last season when AX Armani Exchange Milan edged Herbalife Gran Canaria 104-106.
In Round 3, both teams will be on the road in Spain next Friday. ALBA travels to face FC Barcelona, while Efes will visit Valencia Basket.
Friday, October 11, 2019