Greek Basket League round-up (week 18)

P.A.O.K. – Panionios 79-65

PAOK fans who went to PAOK Sports Arena, expected their team to dominate Panionios who sinks last to the Greek Table, and so they did, mostly due to their very good start, 26-13 at the end of the first quarter. Throughout the second period the “Red and Blue” tried to close the gap twice but their opponents had the answers they needed to end the half in front 41-32.

Right after the restart of the match, Panionios got the margin to 6 points, 41-35, but a 7-0 run gave another safe point difference to the home side that concluded the 30’ of play leading 58-50. The last attempts by the visitors to have a shot at the game were not what needed, they ran out of energy and “Dikefalos tou Vorra” took advantage of their poor defense to seal the deal. Langfrod scored 15 points while Coleman had 20 for the defeated team.

K.A.O.Dramas- Koroivos Amaliadas 78-62

KAOD was on top of their game playing both good defense and being productive on offense, to beat Koroivos. The visitors appeared weak on their perimeter defense, allowing their opponents to take a 24-16 lead after 10’. Steadily the lead was increased in favor of KAOD who ended the half with a 5-0 run (46-31).

They also started the second part of the game with a 6-2 partial score, resulting on Koroivos mostly giving up (62-39 after 30’), with the home team resting some of their started for the remaining period. Papamakarios was the MVP with 14 crucial points while on the other side Marshall was the game’s top scorer with 18 but most of them came in the final minutes.

Kolossos Rhodes- Apollon Patras 64-63

Basketball fans had the chance to watch a thrilling game in “Venetokleio” where Waters scored two free throws with the time stuck on 0.00, to give his team an extremely important win. Not many things separated the two sides right for the tip-off, with the home team ending the first period leading 14-13. Both sides got their hands on the lead but a couple of better offensive choices from Apollon, allowed them to end the half in the driver’s seat, 30-32.

Larentzakis led his team after the resume of the match, scored 9 consecutive points and reach 19 personal, giving his team a lead 41-34. The visitors tried to use aggressive tactics, performing more drives towards the basket, to reduce the gap to 4, (48-44 after 3 periods). Kolossos got a 9-point lead again but their defense inside the paint was not good and allowed their opponents to reach them again. 18 seconds before the buzzer, the visitors were leading 61-63. A good defense by Kolossos, gave them the chance to make an attack in 4”. Waters made the last shot in “dead time” and the referees saw had contact, giving him 3 free throws, which were made and the home side grabbed the win literally in no time. Larentzakis scored 25 points and was the MVP while Fitzpatrick had 20.

A.E.N.Kifissias- Aris 65-79

Aris appeared strong on the road against AENK and seems to secure a spot in the top 4 teams of the league. Nice start for the visitors that had great ball movement while they did not allow easy points, and despite an early 17-10, they ended the first period leading 19-25. With a run continuing on both periods 4-22, after 14 minutes they had the upper hand, only to maintain a safe lead until halftime (29-37).

The home team was not about to give up on the match and returned to the game determined to play strong in order to have their chances. They indeed came close to their opponents, applied some pressure but a 0-8 partial score during the last minute of the 3rd, gave Aris the 46-57 lead. Disappointment was clear for Kifissia that could not follow and caused no big trouble until the end. Vezenkov was once again the MVP of the game with 17 points and 11 rebounds the same time that Silas had 16 for AENK.

A.G.O.Rethimno- Panathinaikos 77-94

Panathinaikos did the basics correctly and met no real difficulties against Rethimno. The Cretans took advantage of their home ground and got a small lead but when Diamantidis and Gist got in the game, the “Greens” managed to take a small 21-22 lead after 10’. Despite the momentum the visiting team had, AGOR did not give up and held on to the game mostly because of some important shots behind the arc while they played tight defense. When Ivanovic used a shorter and quicker line-up things changed with the half time score finding Panathinaikos leading 39-47.

The visitors continued to apply pressure on defense playing in a more aggressive fashion, forcing turnovers while on the offensive side they were able to find more open shots, reaching the 30’ mark in front 57-71. AGOR did not really have many chances at this one since their opponents were focused until the end, finally walking away with the win. Gist scored 19 points and was the best player inside both paints while Faye with 16 put up a big effort but Panathinaikos’ defense did not allow him to be a threat.

A.E.K.- Panelefsiniakos 105-80

Inglish was outstanding this Sunday, made 8/9 shots behind the arc and led AEK to a relatively easy win. His explosive start to the game boosted his teammates to end the first period in front 32-24. The home team kept on being productive while Panelefsiniakos clearly could not follow, reaching half time with the game on AEK’s hands, 62-41.

Not many things changed after the break since the visitors had no chance of returning to the game and coach Sakota performed a small rotation to give all of his players some time to show themselves. 89-64 after 30 minutes and AEK passed the 100 points couple of minutes before the buzzer. Inglish was the MVP with 28 points and on the other side Looby scored 19 with 11 rebounds.

A.O. Trikala- Olympiacos 87-105

Trikala not enough for Olympiacos who had an easy evening on the road. Spanoulis started the game very well pushing his team to a 12-32 lead after 10 minutes with the home team trying to recover and after some good defensive efforts brought the game difference to 10 points, 43-53.

The bad start of the home team could have been a problem but their overall good stats of field goals allowed them to close the gap even more and at the end of the 3rd period they were trailing by 8, 70-78. Olympiacos had to defend in order to avoid further trouble and so they did, running an 1-10 partial score 4 minutes before the end. At this point it was almost clear that Trikala were out of energy, leading to the final score which hardly deflects their attempt. Spanoulis was the MVP with 25 points and 8 assists while for the home team Ingram scored 15p.