Hezonja makes eight threes as Real Madrid destroys Virtus on the road

2023-03-24T21:04:57+00:00 2023-03-24T21:53:26+00:00.

Aris Barkas

24/Mar/23 21:04


Super Mario Hezonja was unstoppable, Yabusele also had a big night and Real Madrid got an easy road win

By Eurohoops team/ info@eurohoops.net

Marco Belinelli was great with 26 points and six made threes, but Mario Hezonja was even hotter with 26 points on 8/11 threes.

Plus Guershon Yabusele had also a big night with 24 points and Real Madrid got an easy road win with the final score being 96-79.

Hezonja entered the last period having scored eight points and made most of his damage in the closing period with six made threes.

“It looks like we beat them with our individual talent”, Hezonja said after the final buzzer. “We were just sharing the ball and it just so happened that I was the open one who scored. But this is not enough. If we want to do something serious we need more than just individual talent. We are loaded with that. We know that we have some of the best players in the competition, but we need more than that.”

A dominant display from the start

Real Madrid had a dominant start, leading 23-6 after eight minutes, and closed the first period with more than a double score (26-12).

However, Virtus reacted in the second period and made it a seven-point game (38-31) behind hot Belinelli who had 15 points and made things happen.

Still, Real Madrid finished the first half with a 17-point lead (50-33) with Guerhson Yabusele making a three-point at the buzzer for a total of 13 points.

Virtus once again tried to come back and the hosts did trim Real Madrid’s lead to seven points (62-55), but that was the best they could do.

Madrid was up by ten at the end of the third (68-58) and never looked back, getting even a 23-point lead (94-71) with Mario Hezonja being unstoppable as Real Madrid got its 21st win of the season.

On the other hand, Virtus Bologna with a 13-17 record at this point doesn’t seem to have any realistic chances to make the playoffs.

Scariolo wanted less fear from his team

Virtus Segafredo Bologna head coach Sergio Scariolo admitted that his team faced a great opponent, but also he expected more from his players.

As he said after the game: “They played a great game. Every time we got close they had two or three big shots or big plays in the air. You have to accept that they are a super, top-level team. But at the same time, I think in the second half we showed less fear. In the first half, I think we were less convinced that we could play. We were trying difficult things that typically don’t work against size and top teams.”

On the other side, Real Madrid head coach Chus Mateo was satisfied and could leave with Belinelli making shots: “We moved the ball really well and played as a team. We played together today. On defense, we played smart. We didn’t help too much on the big guys. Except for [Marco] Belinelli, who is an amazing shooter – how he shoots it’s difficult to stop when he plays like this – we played really good defense as a team. I am very happy with the performance. It was a hard game where we had to pay attention from the beginning to the end.”