Home court rules in round two, Eurocup Last 32 round up

Races in the eight Last 32 groups got heated after two days of action in Round 2. Home teams took care of their home courts, winning in 12 of 16 matches in Round 2. Seven teams improved to 2-0 records, each of them taking sole possession of the top spot in their respective group. One of them, Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar downed Valencia Basket in the battle of the last two Eurocup champs, to remain undefeated at 12-0 for the season. Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas also won 12 of 12 games the season, while FC Bayern Munich made a statement with a 38-point road win at fellow German rival Brose Baskets Bamberg..


Zenit St. Petersburg needed an extra session to outlast Strasbourg 87-82 in come-from-behind fashion and take over first place in the group with a 2-0 record. Walter Hodge capped a 6-0 final run in the fourth quarter to send the game to the overtime, while Kyle Landry scored 6 of the final 8 points for his side in the last minute of the extra period to seal the win. Unics Kazan registered its first Eurocup victory this season by downing CEZ Basketball Nymburk 75-67 at home as Keith Langford scored 14 points while Pavel Antipov and Kostas Kaimakoglou posted double-doubles. Unics improved to 1-1 while Nymburk dropped to 0-2.


Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari outlasted Banvit Bandirma 74-75 with a stylish finish on the road in Turkey on Tuesday for its first victory of the Last 32. With 6 seconds left, Sassari center Shane Lawal made a two-handed dunk of an assist delivered by David Logan to give his team the triumph. Sassari and Banvit are now tied with 1-1 records. Rakim Sanders led the winners with 22 points. Undefeated Herbalife Gran Canaria Las Palmas breezed past Buducnost VOLI Podgorica 92-69 to remain undefeated during this campaign. Kyle Kuric netted 19 points in team’s 12th consecutive victory, while Brad Newley, Levon Kendall and Ian O’Leary each had 14.


Cedevita Zagreb stayed undefeated in Last 32 Group I by thrashing Krasny Oktyabr Volgograd 65-83 on the road on Wednesday as Tomislav Zubcic paced the winners with 24 points on 5-of-7 three-point shots, 7 rebounds and 5 steals. Fran Pilepic added 15 while Miro Bilan had 14 for Cedevita. CAI Zaragoza used a strong defensive effort to down the visiting Virtus Rome 67-53, as both teams now have an even 1-1 record. Marcus Landry hit 6 three-pointers in scoring 20 points for CAI, while Jason Robinson chipped in 11 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists.


PAOK Thessaloniki barely survived visiting FoxTown Cantu on Wednesday as it all went down to the wire, when Georgios Dedas hit a three-pointer with 10 seconds left for the 78-77 win of the hosts. Kevin Langford paced the winners with 18 points and 6 assists. Khimki Moscow Region held serve on its home court by downing Limoges CSP 79-70. Petteri Koponen paced the winners with 24 points. Marko Popovic and Tyrese Rice each added 11. As a result, all four teams in the group are now tied with 1-1 records.


Road teams took care of business in Group K on Wednesday. FC Bayern Munich made a statement and locked up first place at 2-0 by routing German rival Brose Baskets Bamberg 52-90 on the road on Wednesday. John Bryant fueled a game-opening 0-13 run, and the visitors never looked back. Nihad Djedovic and Vladimir Stimac scored 16 points while Bryce Taylor had 15 in huge victory. Halil Kanacevic amassed 27 points plus 13 rebounds, leading Union Olimpija Ljubljana to 77-81 road win over JDA Dijon. Blaz Mahkovic added 17 points as Olimpija held on, surviving in the final seconds of the regulation three shots that could have sent the game into overtime. .


In a thriller which went down to the final shot, PGE Turow Zgorzelec registered its first Last 32 win by edging Baloncesto Seville 87-84 at home on Wednesday. The hosts had five scorers in double figures. While Nemanja Jaramaz and Vlad Moldoveanu played key roles for Turow down the stretch, Damian Kulig was one of pacing the winners with 19 points. Telenet Ostend improved to 2-0 record atop of the group standings after rallying to grab a 75-69 victory at home over Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius. Ostend closed the game on a 13-0 run in the final four minutes to pick up a victory after trailing for most of the night. John Prince led the way with 20 points, and Mateusz Ponitka added 18 for the Belgian champion.


Paris Levallois took its first group victory by leading from the middle of the first quarter onwards to a 93-83 decision over visiting Besiktas Integral Forex Istanbul, which fell to 0-2. Blake Schilb had 24 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds for Paris. Sharrod Ford scored 18 points and Mike Green 16 to go with 9 assists. Engin Atsur had 29 points, 9 assists for Besiktas. Pinar Karsiyaka Izmir took over sole possession of first place with another offensive display, downing Neptunas Klaipeda 99-85 at home to go 2-0. Jon Diebler paced the winners with 26 points while hitting 7 of 8 three-point shots. Juan Palacios added 20 points, Bobby Dixon had 16, 8 assists and 4 steals while Kenny Gabriel posted a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds for Karsiyaka.


In a high-class showdown between the last two Eurocup champions, Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar stayed undefeated by downing Valencia Basket 74-62. Anthony Randolph led the winners with 18 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, 5 steals and 3 blocks. It was Lokomotiv’s 13th consecutive Eurocup win since losing to Valencia in Game 2 of the 2012-13 semifinals. SLUC Nancy used a 27-5 run bridging halftime to take its first-ever Last 32 win, comfortably downing CSU Asesoft Ploiesti 84-67 to improve to 1-1. Vaughn Duggins netted 18 points, Randal Falker had 16 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 blocks, while Florent Pietrus collected 10 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals in victory.

Source: Eurocup