BC Khimki held off a late Alba Berlin charge for an 82-77 home win on Tuesday in Group C of the ULEB Cup. Kelly McCarty led the hosts with 17 points as Khimki improved to 2-2. Berlin dropped to 2-2 as well, joining a four-way tie for second place in the group. Khimki was in control for virtually the entire game, using a 14-3 run that spanned the end of the first quarter and the start of the second to take the lead for good. Vladimir Veremeenko gave Khimki an 18-point lead with a three-pointer at the start of the second half. Berlin saved up for a late run and got within 3 in the final minute, but ran out of time. Veremeenko finished with 13 points and Ruben Wolkowysky had 11, while Melvin Booker was good for 9 points and 6 assists for Khimki. William Avery led Berlin with 19 points and 5 assists, Julius Jenkins added 13 points and 5 assists, Nenad Canak 12 and Demond Greene and Chris Owens tallied 11 each.
Khimki won the opening tip and went ahead quickly as Vitaly Fridzon fed Wolkowysky inside for a score and foul. Koko Archibons put Berlin on the board, but Booker added three the hard way for the hosts. Owens tied the game at 7-7 with a triple and then gave Berlin its first lead, 7-9, on the next play, as the teams started trading baskets. Veremeenko snapped the trend with 5 straight points to put Khimki up 18-13. Greene drilled one from long-range, but McCarty and Veremeenko ended the period with the hosts up 22-16. Gianmarco Pozzecco scored 5 straight to give Khimki its first double-figure lead at the start of the second quarter. Jenkins made a layup, Greene added free throws and then Canak drilled a three for an Alba 0-7 spurt, but Ademola Okulaja, Fridzon and Maciej Lampe came right back with an 8-0 run for the hosts. Booker increased the lead to 40-25 and the advantage remained intact until halftime, with the hosts on top 46-31.
Veremeenko gave Khimki its biggest lead with a three at the start of the second half, but Avery keyed a 0-9 run for Berlin that brought the visitors back to a single figure deficit. The trend continued as Oscar Torres capped a 7-0 Khimki run with a three-point-play and Greene drilled back-to-back threes as Alba answered with 8 straight points to make it 56-48. Khimki's Boris Gorenc made a jumper for his first points and Avery ended the period with a free throw for a 58-49 scoreline after 30 minutes. Gorenc remained hot with 5 points to start the fourth quarter, but Avery and Jenkins made sure to keep Alba in the picture. McCarty twice drilled triples to keep Khimki ahead by 10, but the stubborn visitors were brewing a comeback. Jenkins threw down a slam to cut the gap to 71-65 with four minutes left. McCarty came right back with 5 points, but Owens from the line and Avery from beyond the arc got Alba within 5. After a Torres free throw, Jenkins scored a three-point-play to make it 79-76 in the final minute. However that's where Berlin ran out of gas, as Lampe made free throws for Khimki and Sharrod Ford missed a triple, ending Alba's hopes of a road win.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006