By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
A 0-10 run through less than two minutes in the fourth period was more than enough for Baskonia to defeat Valencia 98 – 84 on the road and bounce back to EuroLeague wins. The Basque side is now 6-5 in the competition, 5-1 since coach Dusko Ivanovic’s return.
Valencia dropped to 5-6 after suffering their fifth straight loss.
Markus Howard scored 24 points on 6-14 triples and grabbed five rebounds to lead Baskonia while Chima Moneke had 19 points – 17 in the second half – plus seven boards. Vanja Marinkovic provided 14 points and Codi Miller-McIntyre delivered 11 points plus 10 assists.
“We took care of business in the second half,” Howard said. Overall, Baskonia outscored Valencia 54 – 32 in the second half and 31 – 14 in the fourth quarter. “We definitely corrected some errors, played the right way, executed and made the right plays when it counted.”
“Just let the game come to me,” Howard added on his personal performance. “I’m fortunate to have teammates that trust in my abilities and are talented in their own right. They got us off to a great start and when my name was called, I had to be ready.”
Semi Ojeleye had 16 points while Brandon Davies and Chris Jones scored 13 apiece for Valencia. Their team controlled most of the first half and was up 42 – 30 with two minutes to play in the second period, retaining an advantage after the break despite a comeback by Baskonia.
Two halves, two pictures
“We controlled the game in the first half,” Valencia coach Alex Mumbru said. “In the second half, they scored very easily especially with 3-pointers. We received a lot of them. It’s difficult to arrive at the end of the game with the right options when they score like this.”
The game was close but everything changed in the last 11 minutes. With the score 70 – 66, Baskonia scored seven unanswered points and then made a 0 – 10 run to go up by double figures for the first time in the game. Valencia had no answer for their opponents’ offense and collapsed down the stretch.
“Two phases, two different teams,” Baskonia coach Dusko Ivanovic said. “We started soft and without aggressiveness while Valencia started good. We lost 20 minutes until we played. Markus made some incredible shots that we took advantage off them. After that it was easy to play.”
“Congrats to the players,” Ivanovic mentioned when asked about the 5-1 record of his team since he took over. “They work hard and this is the result.”