Wade Baldwin IV pushes Maccabi to a narrow win over Zalgiris

2024-03-07T22:00:17+00:00 2024-03-08T00:03:15+00:00.

Giannis Askounis

07/Mar/24 22:00


A brilliant defensive effort by Bonzie Colson follows go-ahead free throws by Wade Baldwin IV en route to an eighth straight win across all competitions for Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv

By Eurohoops Team/ info@eurohoops.net

Overcoming resilient Zalgiris, Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv secured a win in Round 28 of the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season.

On Thursday, the Israel champions prevailed, 83-76, behind closed doors in Aleksandar Nikolic Hall.

Falling behind with just over two minutes left on the clock, Maccabi bounced back with an 11-2 finishing sprint and jumped to 15-13 with a second straight EuroLeague win and eighth in a row across all competitions.

“We were where we wanted to be in the last two minutes. And then we made some bad decisions, some turnovers. We lost the momentum,” noted Zalgiris boss Andrea Trinchieri.


With his side sitting in the Play-In zone and seeking more wins down the stretch of the Regular Season, Wade Baldwin IV registered a team-high 16 points behind 5/12 field goals. A 13th consecutive double-digit scoring showing in the EuroLeague for the Vanderbilt product. “Our toughness,” he replied to a question about what decided the close game.

Leading the league with 13 offensive rebounds per game, the team coached by Oded Kattash grabbed 14, fueling a total of 39 versus 27 for the opponents. Five offensive boards for Josh Nebo highlighting a 10-point, 9-rebound effort against his first EuroLeague team.

Bonzie Colson dropped ten points and threw in three steals, including a game-sealing defensive effort with 30.9 seconds left in the fourth quarter, following go-ahead free throws by Baldwin. The 28-year-old forward tallied a team-high performance index rating of 19. “It was a great team win for us,” he mentioned, “Getting stops, getting steals helped us for sure.”

Jasiel Rivero chipped in seven points, four rebounds, two assists, and two steals. Lorenzo Brown finished with nine points plus ten assists and also extended his three-pointer streak to 11 EuroLeague outings. Roman Sorkin (left knee) remained on the injury list. Rafi Menco and Joe Thomasson stayed on the bench.

Zalgiris falters in crunch time

Arriving in Serbia with a distance of two games from the Play-In zone, Trinchieri’s side led for large stretches but fell to 11-17.

“They were intense and aggressive. Nothing was easy for us. But mentally we stuck together as a team,” commented Kattash referring to a solid showing by Zalgiris in capital of Serbia.

Facing his former team, Keenan Evans put up a game-high 18 points to go with four rebounds, four assists, and one steal. Edmond Sumner followed with 14 points, slowing down after 12 points in the first period.

Team captain Edgaras Ulanovas recorded his 250th start in Europe’s premier club continental competition. He ended up with ten points, four assists, three rebounds, and one steal for the reigning league and cup champions in Lithuania.

Besides Dovydas Giedraitis (hamstring) nearing a return to action, Karolis Lukosiunas has yet to officially begin the second spell with the Kaunas outfit after a cup of tea with the Salt Lake City Stars. Danielius Lavrinovicius suited up but did not play.

Big domestic games before Round 29

In a battle for the lead in Lithuania’s Betsafe LKL Regular Season, the Kaunas outfit welcomes rival Rytas in Zalgirio Arena on Sunday. The continental campaign resumes with a visit to BMW Park to face FC Bayern Munich next Friday.

Hapoel Bank Yahav Jerusalem is the next opponent for the Yellows in Israel’s Ligat Winner Regular Season on Sunday. Back to Belgrade but in an away game versus Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet sets the EuroLeague Round 29 challenge on Thursday.

Photo Credit: EuroleagueBasketball.net

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