Alec Peters Baskonia
Photo: Euroleague Basketball

With Olympiacos losing their energy and concentration after the first period and Baskonia controlling the rhythm of the match, the players of coach Ivanovic got an impressive, 91-66, win at home on Wednesday night (3/3).

Olympiacos started well in the first quarter and got a 10-point lead which was quickly vanished when Baskonia strengthened their defense and found their rhythm on offense with Jokubaitis in the first half and Vildoza in the second. Livio Jean-Charles was the only credible offensive source for Olympiacos but that wasn’t enough for coach Bartzokas and his players to get away with the win and end their 6-0 losing streak.

Luca Vildoza was the top scorer for Baskonia with 19 points and an exceptional second half while Jokas Giedraitis added another 18. For Olympiacos, Livio Jean-Charles was the top scorer with 15 points with Octavius Ellis adding 12.

Teamwork does the job for Olympiacos

Olympiacos had a solid start in Vitoria securing a 5-point lead against Baskonia with Kosta Koufos making his debut with the Greek club and registering his first points. The guests started well offensively putting energy on the court, trying to control the rhythm of the match (5-11). Baskonia missed several opportunities to score having to overcome and break Olympiacos’ solid defense but managed to take the difference down to 3 points. The guests were playing as a team, passing the ball well and following all offensive plays. Baskonia didn’t manage to control this opening quarter of the match and overcome Olympiacos’ strong defense and closed the first ten minutes trailing by 6 points (15-21).

They fell in Baskonia’s trap

The guests started with a 6-0 run in the second quarter to extend their lead to double digits (15-25) with Baskonia replying with their own 5-0 run, bringing the difference down to 5 again (20-25). With Peters scoring his first triple, the hosts returned within a single point and they got their first lead of the match with Fall and a 13-2 overall run (28-27). Olympiacos didn’t take full advantage of Baskonia’s turnovers (9), committed their own (9), let the home side extend their lead and head to the locker rooms with a nine point lead (43-32).

Photo: Twitter/ Euroleague Basketball

Baskonia stil in control, Olympiacos still hoping

Olympiacos started the second half of the match with Sloukas orchestrating baskets and his teammates scoring easy points for their team. McKissic, coming from a career high night, scored his first triple of the match to put Olympiacos back within 6 points and push his team, along with Sloukas, to a comeback (48-41). Baskonia extended their lead to 14 points with consecutive triples from Vildoza and Polonara while Olympiacos seemed unable to challenge the hosts defensively (57-43). The guests were using their fouls unwisely giving Baskonia the chance to renew possession or go the free throw line. Baskonia was in control of the match the entire time, stealing the ball, having an obvious size advantage and scoring easy buckets (65-52). Jean-Charles was the only one who was trying to keep Olympiacos close and with a tough bucket and the foul brought his team back within 11 points, Vezenkov shot the technical foul free throw to close the quarter for his team, trailing by 10 (68-58).

When the lead gets big the basket expands

With Vildoza moving to 13 points and Baskonia’s lead going back to 15 points, Olympiacos seemed to have lost their concentration and energy, forcing coach Bartzokas to a time out (73-58). From that point an on it was all Baskonia on the court with the hosts stretching their lead to almost 20 points and Olympiacos unable to keep up. Βaskonia closed the match with a dominant 91-66 score and continued their winning streak, while Olympiacos moved to their 7th consecutive loss in the Euroleague.