With an explosion of energy in the fourth quarter and with the Baldwin-Lucic duo leading the way offensively, Bayern Munich secured a tough, 76-71 win at home against Panathinaikos, on Thursday night (4/3) for Euroleague’s Round 28. Panathinaikos had a great start in the match, took advantage of their size, had a rhythm on offense but that was before Bayern strengthened their defense. That’s when the guests returned on the game and with Wade Baldwin leading his team offensively for another match, started building their lead.
Vladimir Lucic did a great job defensively, managed to keep Mario Hezonja on a low-scoring night, brought energy on the court and helped offensively. Panathinaikos found a way to come back on the match, found their rhythm on offense but got trapped in Bayern’s solid defense at the end.
Wade Baldwin was the top scorer for Bayern Munich with 27 points while Vladimir Lucic helped his team with 14 points and a great defensive performance. Mario Hezonja was the top scorer for Panathinaikos for second straight match with 14 points, while Papagiannis and Bochoridis added 10 points each.
Panathinaikos’ big men did the job
The two teams went head-to-head in the first minutes of the match with Panathinaikos executing well and taking full advantage of their size, compared to Bayern, and scoring easy baskets under the rim (4-8). Bayern’s solid defense didn’t let Panathinaikos’ extend their lead and run on the fast break. They were stealing and blocking the ball but they were still struggling on the offensive end (8-8). Baldwin with the layup and the extra free throw gave Bayern their first single-point lead of the match (11-10) two minutes before the end of the quarter, but Panathinaikos bounced back with a 3-11 run and closed the first quarter leading by 7 (14-21).
Bayern’s defense too strong, put them back on the game
Bayern strengthened their defense in the second quarter but Panathinaikos’ offense was just too good to let them come any closer to the score (21-27). Despite their great percentages on offense, the guests seemed vulnerable under pressure, but they were able to find ways to break Bayern’s defense and score. With Lucic and Baldwin doing a great job on defense against Panathinaikos, Bayern went back to 5 points (24-29), forcing Panathinaikos’ bench to a time-out. Coming back from the time-out, the guests played good defense, stole the ball and went to a 9-point lead for the first time in the match (24-33). Five quick points from Bayern, brought the score to 29-35, putting Panathinaikos’ into trouble seeing their safe lead vanish with 2 minutes until the end of the first half remaining. The guests were forced to make rushed decisions on offense, committed turnovers and Bayern came back to two points (33-35). Panathinaikos went to the free throw line with Ben Bentil, made one out of the two with the hosts having last possession with 3 seconds on the clock. Wade Baldwin with the ball, shot the triple, made it and got the unsportsmanlike foul to put his team in the leader’s position at the end of the second quarter (37-36).
Panathinaikos found rhythm and we got a game again
Bayern continued playing solid defense coming back from the locker rooms, with Wade Baldwin and Vladimir Lucic leading their team offensively and take their largest lead of the match (44-38). All that before Bayern’s defense explodes and Wade Baldwin extends their lead to eight points with a thunder dunk (50-42). Great full court execution by Panathinaikos to finish a 4” play with a triple from Mario Hezonja to bring his team back within 4 points (53-49). The guests found their rhythm on offense and ended the third quarter trailing by 2 (57-55).
Baldwin and Lucic led the way
Panathinaikos went into the fourth quarter with a tough basket and the extra free throw from Lefteris Bochoridis to lead the game by 1 point (57-58). Bayern seemed to be losing their concentration letting the guests to gain confidence in the last 9 minutes of the match. With the two teams tied at 61 points and 7 minutes on the clock, Lucic fired the triple to bring his team up by 3 points (64-61). The Baldwin-Lucic duo led Bayern offensively, took advantage of Panathinaikos’ missed shots and gave their team a five-point lead at a very crucial moment of the match (68-63). Bayern never looked back from that moment and on and closed the match with a 76-71 win.