Rochestie, Bjelica lead Zvezda's huge upset in Madrid
In a thrilling showdown that went down to the wire, Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade bounced back from recent losses by downing Real Madrid 83-87 on the road in the Spanish capital on Friday. Zvezda improved to 3-7 in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague standings while Madrid dropped to 5-5. Taylor Rochestie paced the winners with 18 points. Milko Bjelica added 16, Pero Antic had 11 while Ognjen Dobric and James Feldeine each got 10 for Zvezda. Luka Doncic led Madrid with 20 points. Jaycee Carroll added 12 while Rudy Fernandez and Trey Thompkins each had 10 for the hosts. Three-pointers by Rochestie and Bjelica gave Zvezda an early 10-14 lead. Doncic came off the bench, scoring 12 points in less than 5 minutes to put Madrid ahead, 24-19, after 10 minutes. Bjelica and Rochestie kept pacing Zvezda, and they got help from Dobric and Branko Lazic to let Zvezda regain a 39-46 margin at halftime. Three-pointers by Feldeine, Rochestie and Antic boosted the guests' margin to 47-60 late in the third quarter. Fernandez and Carroll stepped up and a layup by Felipe Reyes made it a one-point game, 83-84, already in the final minutes. Antic struck from downtown with 7.7 seconds left to seal Zvezda's big road win in style. Zvezda hit 17 three-point shots, setting a club record and matching the high in the EuroLeague this season.
Rochestie bettered Walter Tavares's dunk with a triple to give Zvezda an early 2-3 lead. Santi Yusta and Thompkins each struck from downtown but Mathias Lessort singlehandedly kept the guests within 8-6. Dejan Davidovac made free throws and a three-pointer by Bjelica forced a Madrid timeout at 8-11. Doncic took over with a jumper, a fastbreak slam and a step-back triple to put Madrid ahead, 17-16. Antic answered from beyond the arc but Carroll and an unstoppable Doncic gave Madrid a 24-19 lead after 10 minutes. Bjelica followed a layup with a three-pointer early in the second quarter. Dobric also struck from downtown at 28-27. Zvezda found its go-to guy in Rochestie, who scored twice in penetration and added an off-balance jumper to put the guests back ahead, 32-36. Fabien Causeur and Facu Campazzo tried to change things for Madrid but Lazic, Feldeine and an unstoppable Rochestie boosted Zvezda's lead to 39-46 at halftime.
Causeur hit a jumper right after the break but back-to-back triples by Feldeine made it a double-digit game, 41-52. Campazzo and Doncic fueled a 6-0 Madrid run that Tavares capped with a slam, but Rochestie and Bjelica restored a 47-57 Zvezda margin. Antic capped an 0-8 run with a three-pointer but Doncic and Chasson Randle gave Madrid hope at 54-63. A six-meter jumper by Dobric and a power layup by Davidovac kept Zvezda way ahead, 58-67, after 30 minutes. Fernandez and Carroll combined for all points in an 8-0 run that brought Madrid as close as 66-67 with 8 minutes to go. However, Rochestie hit a triple and Nemanja Dangubic struck twice from downtown to give Zvezda plenty of fresh air at 69-76. Thompkins, Dobric and Carroll joined the three-point shootout and free throws by Fernandez and Doncic tied the game, 79-79, with 2:40 left. Feldeine scored in penetration, Davidovac added free throws but Doncic and Reyes kept Madrid within 83-84. Reyes collected a steal but Doncic turned the ball over, and a big three-pointer by Antic sealed the outcome with 7.7 seconds left, allowing Zvezda to celebrate a truly historical win!
Both teams return to Turkish Airlines EuroLeague action next Friday as Zvezda hosts Anadolu Efes Istanbul while Madrid visits Olympiacos Piraeus in a rematch of the 2013 and 2015 finals.
Friday, December 1, 2017