ASVEL slows down Zenit in second half for 4th straight double-digit win
LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne dominated the second half in grabbing an 89-68 home victory over Zenit St. Petersburg. Mantas Kalnietis's 7DAYS EuroCup career-high 22 points paced five ASVEL players in double figures as the French side won its fourth straight game for a 4-1 record in Group C. DeMarcus Nelson scored 14 points, David Lighty had 12, Eric Buckner added 10 and Miro Bilan posted 10 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks as ASVEL held the EuroCup's top-scoring team to just 68 points - 24.5 points below its average. Sergey Karasev paced Zenit with 18 points and Philip Scrubb added 13 points while Brandon Jennings had just 3 points on 2 shots to with 7 assists. Zenit's loss dropped its record to 3-2.
Bilan made sure the hosts started strong with 5 points, 5 rebounds and 1 block for a 9-8 lead. After a pair of Zenit three-pointers, the visitors were held scoreless for nearly four minutes and Kalneitis scored 5 points in a 10-0 run to put ASVEL up 18-8. The advantage was up to 11 points, but Scrubb and Karasev both hit from long range to trim the margin to 21-18 after 10 minutes. After Jarrod Uthoff made it a 1-point game, Lighty's 5 points sparked a 10-0 run for a 31-20 cushion. Karasev carried his team again with two baskets to start a 2-14 surge for Zenit's first lead, 33-34. The lead switched hands five more times and ASVEL was up 39-38 at the break. Kalnietis started the second half on fire with three straight layups to keep ASVEL up 45-42. The Lithuanian nailed 3 three-pointers and Bilan converted a three-point play in a 19-7 ASVEL run to make it 66-52. Zenit countered with the final 4 points of the quarter to for a 66-56 lead. ASVEL did not let Zenit back into the game in the fourth quarter as the hosts got 5 points from Nelson in a 9-0 run for a 75-56 lead. Evgeny Voronov finally got Zenit on the board after more than three minutes. But a 6-0 ASVEL run to make it 83-60 followed and the game was decided.
Another double-digit win
ASVEL continues to roll in the 7DAYS EuroCup with a 21-point win after registering victories by 14, 11 and 11 points the previous three rounds.
Mantas Kalnietis took over the third quarter with 15 points, starting the period with three straight layups and then knocking down 3 three-pointers - hitting his first 6 shots of the quarter. The Lithuanian veteran finished with 22 points - a EuroCup career high - to go with 5 assists.
While Kalnietis was huge in the third quarter, Miro Bilan was big throughout the game in picking up 10 points, 10 rebounds – 4 of them from the offensive glass – and 2 blocks.
Zenit came into the game as the top three-point shooting team in the EuroCup at 48% beyond the stripe. But ASVEL held the Russian team to just 5-of-16 shooting from long range for 31%. ASVEL also committed just 6 turnovers.
ASVEL will look to make it five wins in a row as it remains at home to face Valencia Basket. Zenit is on the road again and hopes to grab its second away win as it travels to Turk Telekom Ankara.
Tuesday, October 30, 2018