Lithuanian joy in Klaipeda and Red Star shine in Vitoria, Euroleague round up

Neptunas collected their second win of the Euroleague season with a 94-87 success over Valencia in a Group D encounter in Klaipeda. 

The Lithuanian newcomers led from tip-to-buzzer, leading 13-3 in the opening exchanges and draining 11 three-pointers in the win, which gives them a 2-3 record overall. Valencia drop further behind the pack by going to 1-4. 

Deividas Gailius led Neptunas with 19 points, Donatas Zavackas chipped in with 15 in victory. 

“We had two bad games, and we wanted to come back,” Gailius said afterwards. “We played at home; we are a different team at home. We just tried to push what we can do the best, and it worked tonight. We hit some big shots from long range; those are our game, our shots when we play at home.” 

A solid shooting performance from Valencia’s Pau Ribas, which saw him go 7/13 from the field for 22 points wasn’t enough. 

Elsewhere in Group D, Red Star Belgrade scored a vital 86-66 away win over Laboral Kutxa in a match that saw them take over in the second quarter, turning a 22-21 first period deficit into a 41-34 lead and from there, they never looked back. 

Coach Dejan Radonjic’s squad improved to 3-2 with the win, moving into sole possession of second place in Group D, with Laboral slipping to 2-3.

Luka Mitrovic led Red Star with 17 points. Torike Shengelia led all scorers in vain for Laboral Kutxa with 20. 

“We knew that we had to play really good defence to defeat Laboral Kutxa,” Red Star coach Dejan Radonjic said. “We played really well in that segment of the game, we had some problems with the pick and roll in the second quarter, but we solved that in the second half. 

“We had the advantage also in offense, playing really well and it doesn’t matter that we had problems from the three-point range but not on the free throws. In the second half we were better in shooting, so that’s why the difference on the scoreboard the difference went up. We played an excellent game and this is a big win for us.” 

Olympiacos eased to 5-0 and top spot in Group D with a resounding 93-66 win over Galatasaray in Piraeus. This was the Reds 22nd straight regular season victory. 

Othello Hunter paced the Greeks with 17 points and 10 rebounds as Olympiacos raced into a 26-13 lead after one and never looked back. 

Carlos Arroyo led Galatasaray with 14 points as they drop to 2-3. 

Fenerbahce came away with a 93-86 road win against Bayern Munich in Group C as Andrew Goudelock set a new Euroleague record. 

Last season’s Eurocup MVP hit 10 three-pointers on his way to a 34 point haul and an index rating of + 40. Goudelock also tied a club-record feat with Hakki Harun Erdeney, who scored 34 back in December 2001 in a road win at Peristeri. 

His three-point record broke Saulius Stombergas’ feat, as he made nine threes in a game back in April 2001. Thomas Kelati and Mirza Teletovic had since tied it. 

Fenerbahce improve to 3-2, while Bayern drop to 1-4 despite 16 points from both Nihad Djedovic and Vasilije Micic.

EA7 Milano had little trouble overcoming PGE Turow, winning 90-71 in the fashion capital. 

The Italians move to 2-3 in Group C as they went on a 16-1 run in the fourth quarter to seal the win. Turow drop to 1-4 despite a strong first half showing, where they played solid basketball before fatiguing in the second half. 

Euroleague champions Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv scored an impressive 70-66 road win at Unicaja Malaga in Group B.

The Israeli side have not enjoyed the best of weeks recently as they lost at home to Cedevita then lost to Maccabi Haifa domestically, while losing Guy Pnini to injury. So this win was a welcome relief for Guy Goodes and his side. 

“It’s a great win for us,” Goodes said. “We talked with our guys before the game and the situation we were going through. We knew we were coming to a difficult arena in Malaga. I think we showed big character and we did a wonderful job, especially in defence. We wanted to keep Unicaja under 70 points and we did so by allowing them 66.” 

Devin Smith topped all scorers with his double-double of 24 points plus 10 rebounds, and Brian Randle added 12. For Unicaja, who had coach Joan Plaza ejected for two technicals, Ryan Toolson and Will Thomas netted 16 points apiece. Both teams move to 3-2. 

Nizhny Novgorod won the all-Russian affair by beating Unics Kazan 79-73, handing them their first Euroleague win of the season in Group A. 

Taylor Rochestie had a great game, leading the winners with 24 points, and he led a game-changing 7-0 run in the fourth, which helped with the victory. 

Nikos Zisis had 15 for Unics. Both teams stand at 1-4 in the group.