By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
After starting the game with a 13-4 run, but leading only by two (21-19) at the end of the first period, Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv wasn’t going to make the same mistake. The hosts started the second period with a 12-5 run, they built a comfortable 52-37 advantage by halftime and cruised until the end of the game against ALBA Berlin on the way to a 5-2 record.
The final 104-78 was the natural end in an uneventful night with Scottie Wilbekin leading the way with 16 points in 18 minutes for the winning side and Tarik Black having an almost perfect game with 13 points, just one missed free-throw, three rebounds, two assists, and four steals.
“I think we started pretty well, to be honest with you,” said Black. “From the beginning of the season, we started playing well. They came out to play hard – our credit to ALBA, they are an excellent team, and when they find their rhythm, they are going to be good. But I think it was our night and played at our rhythm.”
“It was beautiful basketball.”
John Dibartolomeo was the top scorer of the winning side with 19 points, as coach Giannis Sfairopoulos had the chance to rest his starters, and the bench also delivered big in the second half. “It was beautiful basketball,” said the Greek coach after the final buzzer. “I want to congratulate my players not because of the win and their performance, but because of their concentration. It might look now like an easy game, but it wasn’t”.
“We got some stops on defense, and that always takes the pressure off you on offense. We moved the ball well, and I got some open looks, and my teammates found me. We were able to break the game open,”, added Dibartolomeo.
Tyler Dorsey added 12 points, and Omri Casspi had 10 for Maccabi.
Tyler Cavanaugh scored 14 points for ALBA Berlin, but that’s just a footnote. The German squad for the first team in this season’s EuroLeague collapsed after the first ten minutes of play. “Maccabi played an excellent game and we couldn’t compete with them,” coach Aito Garcia Reneses admitted.
Photo credit: Maccabi Tel Aviv