Tarolis saves Lietkabelis at the buzzer
Newcomer Lietkabelis Panevezys defeated MZT Skopje Aerodrom 90-89 thanks to a buzzer-beating game-winner from Donatas Tarolis to open the new EuroCup season in thrilling fashion. The home team led by more than 20 points in the second half before MZT battled back with a series of triples, and the visitors took the lead with just 3.4 seconds remaining. But then Tarolis, who totalled 17 points, grabbed a missed shot from Lorenzo Williams to score the winner and spark major celebrations. Ksistof Lavrinovic top scored for the hosts with 18 points, while Zygimantas Skucas added 15, Williams scored 11 and Ben Madgen 10. For MZT, Stefan Sinovec led the way with 20 points, Xavier Thames and Uros Lukic both scored 17, Josh Scott contributed 13 and Charlon Kloof and Jure Lalic both had 10.
Jure Lalic had the honor of being the first player to score in the 2016-17 7DAYS EuroCup and a three-pointer by Lucic soon gave MZT a 2-6 lead. Madgen and Simas Galdikas helped Lietkabelis get a 16-11 margin right after that. Madgen kept pacing Lietkabelis and a floating layup by Gintaras Leonavicius restored a 27-22 lead after 10 minutes. A three-pointer by Williams made it a double-digit game, 34-23, early in the second quarter. Tadas Rinkunas and Leonavicius joined the three-point shootout to break the game open, 44-25. Sinovec and Thames brought MZT a bit closer, 50-35, at halftime. Skucas had 5 points in an 8-0 run that gave Lietkabelis a 68-45 margin, which Thames and Kloof cut to 74-58 after 30 minutes. A 0-9 run that Thames capped with a triple gave MZT hope, 77-67, with 7 minutes left, but Lietkabelis kept a safe lead until the final buzzer. MZT managed to get as close as 88-86 with a minute left. Sinovec struck from downtown to complete the guests' unbelievable comeback, 88-89, with 3.4 seconds left. Lietkabelis called timeout, Williams airballed a corner triple but Tarolis grabbed the ball in the air and put it in to give the hosts a big win!
Wednesday, October 12, 2016