Perfect Trento holds off Nanterre
Dolomiti Energia Trento hung on to a 65-71 road win at Nanterre 92 to remain perfect and continue its best-ever start in the EuroCup. Trento improved to 3-0 to took sole position of the first place in Group D, while Nanterre dropped its second consecutive game to fall to 1-2 and a share of third place. The hosts held 24-13 lead after the first quarter, but Trento stepped up defensively after that, erased the deficit before halftime and held the lead for the majority of the second half. The game came down to the wire, but Gary Browne took matters into his own hands, hitting a pair of tough jump shots to secure Trento's victory. Browne led the winners with 18 points, 8 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 steals. Jeremy Morgan scored 14 points, JaCorey Williams collected 10 points plus 8 rebounds, while Victor Sanders also scored 10 for Trento. Isaia Cordinier paced the hosts with 19 points. Chris Warren netted 13, while Brian Conklin and Tyler Stone scored 11 apiece in a losing effort.
The teams traded blows early with Nanterre opening the game with a combination of its inside and outside game. Tyler Stone and Cordinier hit a triple apiece with Alpha Kaba's three-point play in between. Jeremy Morgan hit from downtown for Trento, before Kelvin Martin's dunk tied it at 9-9. But Cordinier had a three-point play and Stone added a triple before Brian Conklin strung together 6 close-range points to put Nanterre in control. Johnny Berhanemeskel hit a triple to make it 24-13 after 10 minutes. Damien Bouquet's close-range basket kept the lead in double figures in the second. Trento replied as Luke Maye scored twice inside to spark a 0-13 run during which he also hit a three-pointer. Browne added 5 points to make it 28-31. Warren's triple restored a Nanterre edge, but Browne answered himself from behind the arc and added a long jumper to give the visitors a 35-36 halftime advantage.
Baskets were few and very far between in the third quarter. Warren hit a triple for the hosts and Williams scored twice from close range for Trento, but that was all in the opening 5 minutes of the quarter. A basket from Martin inside and Victor Sanders from the outside opened a 38-45 margin. Conklin snapped Nanterre's scoring drought before triples from Warren and Cordinier helped the hosts erase the deficit and make it 50-50 going into the final quarter. Morgan started the fourth quarter with a triple for the visitors who were not allowing much on the defensive end. Conklin and Cordinier made layups for the hosts, but Morgan knocked down another triple and Williams had a putback to give Trento a 56-62 lead midway through the fourth. After a timeout, Morgan followed with another triple to cap a 0-8 run. Bouquet answered with a triple to give Nanterre hope and Cordinier's corner three in transition cut it to 62-65 with 1:09 to go. On the ensuing trip down the floor, Browne nailed a tough jumper. Stone bettered it with a triple to get within 65-67, but Browne nailed another jumper with 13.3 seconds to go, that decided the game.
Clutch Gary Browne
Gary Browne had 14 points entering the fourth quarter and did score again until the final minute of the contest. But with the game on the line, Browne nailed a pair of tough jumpers in the last 39 seconds to seal the win.
Jeremy Morgan fueled Trento in the fourth quarter, hitting 3 triples to score 9 of his 14 points in the quarter, not allowing Trento to relinquish the lead during the final 10 minutes.
Defense wins it
Trento committed 13 turnovers in the game - 1 more than Nanterre. But in the fourth quarter, it was Trento's defense that forced 4 turnovers, while the visitors turned the ball over only once themselves. That defensive effort was on top of Trento’s defense, which allowed 24 points in the first 10 minutes, keeping Nanterre to only 26 points in the middle two quarters.
Trento head coach Nicola Brienza has a new team this season, but a very similar road warrior mentality. Trento won three of its five regular-season road games last season and is already 2-0 away from home this season.
Next week in Round 4, Trento will welcome Cedevita Olimpija Ljubljana, while Nanterre will visit Promitheas Patras.
Tuesday, October 13, 2020