By Eurohoops team/ email@example.com
Yet another thrilling finale expected us in the last quarterfinal of the Copa Del Rey. Baskonia had the experience to overcome the heavy resistance put up by Obradoiro and win the game 79 – 77, advancing to the semifinal.
It was a match that came down to details in the very last moments. With Baskonia ahead 77 – 73, and 17 seconds to go, Alec Brown banged a huge 3 for Obradoiro keeping his team alive. When Ioannis Bourousis was fouled, he just made 1/2 from the line, allowing Obradoiro to have a chance of even winning the game. The best free throw shooter in Liga Endesa, Adam Waczynski (93% from the line) succeeded in winning a foul and had the opportunity to tie the score. Alas, he hit target in only one of his shots. Laboral Kutxa proceeded to make the most out of their small, yet vital, advantage, and celebrated the qualification to the semifinal.
But all these would have happened a lot differently, if Velimir Perasovic‘s players hadn’t already entered the final minute of the game with an important lead. That arrived when a downtown bucket by Adam Hanga (the MVP of the game with 20 points and 8 rebounds) and a 3 point play Darius Adams tipped the scales, making the score 75 – 70 from 69 – 70. It was the first strong sequence of answers to the riddle posed by the Basques’ opponents throughout the whole game.
Obradoiro was really tough tough, managing to completely tune down the usual rhythm of Baskonia, at some points of the game. Although they started pretty bad with horrible shooting percentages (0/9 from behind the arc), they began making long range shots at the second quarter, slowly stealing the momentum of their opponents. Even then, Laboral maintained a lead of 5 points (35 – 30) at halftime.
In the third quarter, the output of the players from Obradoiro was increased so much, that they managed to get ahead of the score. Everyone was contributing heavily, since 6 players from the team scored in double digit points. However, their efforts were not enough to get them at what would have been a safe distance from Laboral. A price which they paid in the last minutes of the match.
Copa Del Rey Semifinals:
Bilbao – Gran Canaria (Saturday 19:00 local time)
Laboral Kutxa – Real Madrid (Saturday 21:00 local time)