In a tight and nervous game Caja Laboral kept their cool in the last minutes to prevail over Panathinaikos 77-70 for their second Top16 win.
The two teams needed more than two minutes to score at the beginning. The first player to do so was Teletovic. Both teams were visibly nervous and halfway through the first quarter the score was 4-4. Both teams were mostly shooting from outside and thanks to some San Emeterio initiatives the score became 15-10. Tsartsaris scored five points in a row for 17-16 and the score after ten minutes was 19-18.
In the second quarter Caja Laboral tried to take advantage of their height with Batista and Teletovic. With consecutive offensive boards the Basques pulled away by five points. At that point one of the game’s referees, Jungebrad, was injured. The game was stopped for about five minutes and was continued with just two refs, since both teams consented to it. After the resume Teletovic reached his 8th personal point for 27-20. The Greek champions tightened their defense and made the score 27-26. But San Emeterio was unstoppable and did 30-26. Half time score was 36-33.
Caja Laboral’s lead proved to be fragile as Panathinaikos overtook 41-42 in the third quarter. But halfway through the quarter the ACB champions regained a five points lead thanks to San Emeterio. Then it was Ribas’ time to shine, who made three consecutive threepointers to seal the score after thirty minutes 59-49.
Caja Laboral continued abusing Panathinaikos frontline with Batista and Teletovic. Panathinaikos started pressuring and scored eight unanswered points to make it 62-58. From that point on the hosts just preserved their lead against Panathinaikos, who was let down by some players, including Sato who inbounded a pass… out of bounds. Final score was 77-70.
Caja Laboral: Ribas 9, Huertas 5, Logan 10, Teletovic 17, Batista 11, San Emeterio 21, Oleson, Barac 4, Bjelica
Panathinaikos: Tepic 1, Perperoglou 2, Batiste 14, Fotsis 7, Sato 6, Nicholas 15, Tsartsaris 11, Diamantidis 12 (11 ass), Vouyoukas, Calathes 2