Vytenis Lipkevicius (L) of Zalgiris Kaunas vies with Joshua Shipp (R) of Anadolu Efes Istanbul during the basketball Euroleague Top 16 match Zalgiris Kaunas vs Anadolu Efes Istanbul on March 21, 2013 in Kaunas . AFP photo
Anadolu Efes suffered a disappointing 79-71 Euroleague defeat March 21 against already-eliminated Zalguiris Kaunas in Lithuania. With this score Efes Anadolu slipped to a 9-3 record, while Kaunas increased its own to 5-7 in the group. Having clinched a playoff side last week, Istanbul was outplayed by their rivals especially during the second half of the game.
Anadolu Efes took the early advantage, especially with pivot Semih Erden's powerful inside game and led 25-27 at the end of the first quarter. The Lithuanians did not allow the gap to open during the second half and took back the lead in the final minutes with a 7-0 run. Former Fenerbahçe
Ülker player Dairus Lavrinovic keyed a 13-1 rally right in the beginning of the third quarter to put the score to 57-43.
With the gap in the double digits, the Lithuanians never looked back and offered their crowd a clear victory ahead of the last games of the Top 16 stage.
Lavrinovic led the home side with 24 points while Mindaugas Kuzminskas added 15. Jamon Lucas had 14 points and 14 rebounds for Efes.
Efes will now host Unicaja Malaga on March 28 before visiting leaders Real Madrid on April 4.