Greek Basket League play-offs (round 1, game 3)

Panathinaikos- Kolossos Rhodes 100-70

Panathinaikos defeated Kolossos quite easily and got the ticket for the Greek Basket League semi-finals. Pappas was absent but it did not stop the home team from taking a 24-15 lead, having Batista in great shape. Cooper entered the court and alongside Mavrokefalides helped his team get to the half time in front 51-31.

All they had to do for the rest of the game was too keep attacking the way they did, and despite Batista’s minor injury, they did so, forcing Kolossos to give up the game by the end of the 3rd, 72-45. The closing quarter did not offer many things, except the fact that coach Manolopoulos used many youngsters to rest his starters. MVP was Mavrokefalides with 16 points and for the eliminated side, Waters scored 18.

P.A.O.K.- A.G.O.Rethimno 75-62

The opening quarter was close since PAOK could not find his way to the basket, 15-13. However Bremmer stepped up, gave his side some offensive boost, while on the other end, their defensive efforts were intense to hold AGOR back. The half time score was 43-29.

The visitors attempted to reduce the margin and have a chance, but the shots made behind the arc in crucial moments, allowed PAOK to maintain momentum and reach the 30’ mark leading 61-44. The away team could not try to recover again and naturally they got eliminated, despite Kalampokis heroics with 14 points and big all-around help. MVP was Bremmer with 19 points.

Aris- A.E.K. 79-68

Aris fans over flooded “Nick Gallis Hall” to boost their team to the victory over AEK and promote to the next round of the play-offs. The visitors tried to silence the opponent fans and so they did shooting with 10/13 field goals to get in front 19-24. Aris fans then reacted by throwing various objects inside the court, forcing the restart to delay 20 minutes. After that, AEK lost their pace and as a result the home side overtook and got control of the match with the precious help of Mourtos and Charisis on both ends of the court. 38-36 was the score at the break.

Freethrow totals was a big problem for AEK and a quick 10-0 run from Aris in the middle of the 3rd, created a 12-point margin (53-41), and even when the visitors balanced the game, the 3rd quarter ended with “Kitrinomauroi” leading 59-50. It was clear that Sakota’s team was under heavy pressure. Mostly because they committed many turnovers allowing LaMarcus Reed to skyrocket their lead to 17, 67-50. At that point AEK could not react and gave up to the game, wasting a good chance for a tight clash with Olympiacos (most possibly) in the semi-finals. However they can be confident since it was only their first season in Greek Basket League after a long time, and it was an absolute success.  Top scorer and MVP for Aris was Vezenkov but Charisis and Reed helped a lot too. For the defeated team, Sakota had 19, while Mensah- Bonsu was disappointing again with 8 points and 4 turnovers.