Nanterre celebrates Eurocup comeback with a win
Nanterre 92 opened the 2019-20 7DAYS EuroCup season with a tight, but convincing 85-78 victory over short-handed Joventut Badalona, which missed five players with different injuries. The home team led by 6 at the half, extended the gap to 14 at the end of the third quarter and reached a game-high 17-point advantage, 68-51, early in the fourth. Even though a late rally brought the visitors within 79-74 with 90 seconds to go, 3 free throws by Kenny Chery in the last minute were good enough to seal the outcome. Chery led all Nanterre scorers with 24 points on 4-for-7 shooting from deep plus 9 assists. Dallas Moore chipped in 20 points with 5 threes of his own. Klemen Prepelic, with 23 points, was the best scorer on the losing side. Alen Omic and Albert Ventura netted 13 and 10 points, respectively.
Both teams got out to slow starts in their EuroCup comebacks after years away, trying to set a high pace but finding too much trouble to get a steady scoring flow. Nanterre managed to solve it from inside first with Youssoupha Ndoye and Jean-Marc Pansa combining for half of the 20 first-quarter Nanterre points and later from outside, with Moore and Chery running the show. The two guards combined for 18 points in the second quarter, helping Nanterre build a 45-39 halftime lead. Joventut showed unable to threaten the hosts because of awful shooting accuracy from long range, but tried to survive thanks to a solid offensive rebounding performance. That proved to be not enough, as Spencer Butterfield, Isaia Cordinier and Devin Oliver joined the party to build a 65-51 margin at the end of the third quarter. When Chery expanded it up to 18 points right after the break, Joventut had missed all of its 18 three-point attempts. Prepelic broke the trend at that moment and the visitors managed to find 3 more triples to close the gap and reach the last 2 minutes with hope, but Chery, once again, rose as the savior for his team and drew a foul on a three-point attempt that finally cleared the way to victory.
Almost 4 years later…
The last 7DAYS EuroCup home win for Nanterre took place on November 10, 2016, when it defeated Telekom Baskets Bonn 101-78. At long last, fans were able to celebrate another European win.
Not less than 20
Even though Nanterre struggled to find a good scoring rhythm in the early going, its backcourt came to the rescue and enabled a solid 20-25-20-20 scoring mark per quarter.
Is there anyone available?
Joventut Badalona missed five players in the game, as Luke Harangody, Xavi Lopez Arostegui, Conor Morgan and Shawn Dawson were out and didn’t travel. Nikos Zisis, who was expected to play, became also unavailable right before the game.
Blind from deep
The visitors needed 19 attempts to hit their first three-pointer of the night. 32 minutes had passed already. Even though they ended up nailing 4 in the last quarter, it was too late.
Nanterre will try to add a second win to its card in Istanbul when it visits Darussafaka Tefken on October 8. Joventut Badalona will try to bounce back from this loss with the help of its fans, also on October 8, when it hosts Germani Brescia Leonesa.
Wednesday, October 2, 2019