By Eurohoops Team/ email@example.com
Countering poor long-range shooting with extra energy in the fourth quarter, Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet got into the win column of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague.
Strong defense down the stretch provided the necessary balance, leading to the win, 74-68, versus FC Bayern Munich in Stark Arena on Thursday.
Veteran Milos Teodosic stood out in the Regular Season Round 6 contest. The 36-year-old floor general combined 16 points with 11 assists. Tallying seven of his points in the fourth quarter fueled the comeback.
Yago Dos Santos ended up with eight points, following a clutch triple for a four-point advantage with 19.6 seconds on the clock. His side went from 0/8 three points in the first period and 4/21 after three quarters to 3/8 in the last ten minutes, including the dagger by the Brazilian guard.
“I am happy for the victory because we needed this,” noted Dos Santos, “Now, everybody is happy and more confident.”
Luka Mitrovic and Shabazz Napier chipped in 11 points apiece for the Serbia champions. Beyond contributions to the team coached by Giannis Sfairopoulos to snap a four-game losing streak and improve to 2-4, Ognjen Kuzmic did not play and Dalibor Ilic was a healthy scratch.
“The players gave the maximum. The win belongs to the players. They gave their heart on the court, especially in the second half, to overcome this nervousness that we had the whole game. After all, we wanted so much to win,” said the Greek tactician, “In the end, they showed their character.”
The visitors leading most of the way with their advantage peaking at 14 points midway through the third period, did not hold on, failing to match the energy, mostly shared by the crowd to Zvezda’s players. Dropping to 2-4 with a third consecutive loss was the consequence.
“We got to learn how to manage these games. We need experience. We have to be smarter,” losing head coach Pablo Laso described team requirements, “I think that in key situations we were not able to execute.”
Carsen Edwards shared a game-high 16 points but did not score in the fourth quarter. Isaac Bonga and Leandro Bolmaro followed with 12 points each. Andreas Obst was limited to 1/6 from beyond the arc but the lone make was his 100th in EuroLeague.
Former teammates at Valencia in 2014-15, Nemanja Nedovic (leg) and Vladimir Lucic (hand) were unavailable for their current teams. Zvezda captain Branko Lazic (ribs) stayed on the injury list as well.
“He is much better,” Laso confirmed Lucic being on the verge of moving from individual to team practices, “We hope to have him back as soon as possible. Maybe, he will need a couple of weeks.”
On to Barcelona
The team based in Belgrade facing Buducnost VOLI on Sunday presents the opportunity to match the leading team of AdmiralBet ABA League at 5-1. Switching back to continental action, a road game versus FC Barcelona will be up next on Friday.
Bayern will be back in the capital of Serbia to challenge Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv in EuroLeague’s Round 7 on Thursday. Sitting at 4-1 at the domestic level, visiting Basketball Lowen Braunschweig shapes the next easyCredit BBL game on Sunday.
Photo Credit: EuroleagueBasketball.net