Unics Kazan completed sweep of Cantu
Unics Kazan clinched a berth in the quarterfinals with a 75-72 victory over FoxTown Cantu to win their two-game series with an aggregate score of 145-136. Unics will next face 2013 Eurocup champions of Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar in an all-Russian challenge. The home team used a 17-2 run late in the second quarter to get a double digit margin, but Cantu answered with a 2-11 march bridging the last two quarter to tie the game at 58-58, but 7 points by Keith Langford made the difference in a close finish. Kostas Kaimakoglou led four scorers in double figures for the winners with 14 points; he also added 8 rebounds and 5 assists. Langford, Sergey Bykov and D’Or Fischer netted 13 points each. Ivan Buva scored 17 points for Cantu and pulled down 6 rebounds, James Feldeine added 15 points and Giorgi Shermadini scored 11.
The teams exchanged leads early in the game with the defense prevailing. DeQuan Jones’s put back gave an 8-12 advantage to the guests, who finished ahead at the first break, 11-14, with a basket by Shermadini. After two minutes played in the second quarter, Curtis Jerrells hit from downtown to put Kazan in front 17-16. Jones scored from mid range and gave another lead to Cantu, 23-26, before a 17-2 run sparked by the home team and highlighted by 6 points from Kaimakoglou and 5 from Fischer, made it 40-28. Darius Odom-Johnson from the foul line fixed the score at 40-31 at halftime for Unics.
Cantu scored 6 unanswered points – 4 of them by Buva – to open the second half and get within 40-37, but James White with a deep three gave a more comfortable 47-39 margin to the hosts. Jones and Langford exchanged mid-range jumpers before Feldeine hit a three for the visitors to get within 53-47. A two-pointer posted by Jones and a dunk by Eric Williams kept alive the guests at 56-53 opening the final quarter. Cantu raised its intensity and tied the score at 58-58 through Feldeine, who capped a 2-11 run with a shot from long distance. Fischer and Bykov fueled Unics to go back ahead, 65-59, with four minutes left on the game clock. A three-point-play completed by Buva excited the guests, but Langford scored 5 consecutive points to raise the margin to 70-62. Stefano Gentile made it 72-70 from the foul line, but a huge dunk by Fischer sealed the win and gave a double-digit margin to Unics in the two-game series.
Wednesday, March 11, 2015