Mike Tobey and Valencia hold off Bayern

2021-03-25T22:52:30+00:00 2021-03-25T23:23:44+00:00.

Stefan Djordjevic

25/Mar/21 22:52


Mike Tobey led the way but the whole Valencia squad showed character to survive a strong comeback by Bayern Munich

By Stefan Djordjevic/ sdjordjevic@eurohoops.net

Despite gambling away an early lead, Valencia Basket still succeeded in beating Bayern Munich with 83-76 on the scoreboard in Round 31 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague.

Mike Tobey led the way with 18 points while Nikola Kalinic scored 12 and Derrick Williams 11 points. Sam Van Rossom logged nine points and nine assists. Bojan Dubljevic scored ten including a very important long-range buzzer-beater to end the third quarter.

Tobey was well-aware of how important this win was for Valencia which improved to a 17-14 record compared to Bayern’s 19-12 as both teams are yet to secure a playoff spot among the crowded competition.

“We are fighting for playoffs, so every game is a final for us. We know Bayern is a great team and that is what they do. We had them down big in the first half, but they came back and fought the entire game and won a lot of games like that. I think it shows about our guys finishing the game like we did. The dream continues,” Tobey said.

On the opposing side, Vladimir Lucic scored game-high 20 points in addition to Wade Baldwin’s 13 and Paul Zipser’s nine points.

Valencia banked in eight triples in the first half to go up 46-33 at the break but as it usually happens, Bayern managed to push the game into an exciting finish.

The Germans dominated the third quarter, winning it 30-12 with great defense and a scoring push by Lucic to take over the lead (63-58). However, Valencia recovered from the upset calmly and with a 13-2 run midway through the final period turned the scales to their side and secured the win.

Coach Jaume Ponsarnau was very proud of his whole team for such an important and hard win: “For this, this victory is more special, because Bayern Munich is a great team in this situation of the games [close finishes]. We were not 100% and it was a final, there was more pressure for us. It was a tough game for us and we are really happy. I am especially satisfied with the effort and for the commitment from all of my players. My players made a very good job on rebounds against a very good team on that. They have great big men and our big guys did a great job, but the whole team, in the worst moment of the game, the key moment, gave a very good answer, as a team.”