Fenebahçe Ülker failed to start the Top 16 stage of the Turkish Airlines Euroleague with a win, losing 76-71 to the Unics Kazan in overtime on Jan. 18.
A dominant second half from the Russians saw the hosts storm back from 17 points down to top the Istanbul side in the Group G opener.
Petr Samoylenko starred with career highs of 18 points and nine assists and Vladimir Veremeenko delivered 17 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks for the winners.
Fenerbahçe forward Bojan Bogdanovic paced Fenerbahçe
with a season-high 24 points and veteran guard Ömer Onan added 12.
“We played two different games tonight,” Fenerbahçe
coach Neven Spahija was quoted as saying on the official Euroleague website. “The first 20 minutes we played in a very disciplined manner, we played excellent basketball, while in the second half we completely lost control of the game. We conceded 29 points in the third quarter.”
It looked to be the Turkish champs’ night early, especially after Bogdanovic reeled off 13 unanswered points in the second quarter that helped stake Fenerbahçe
Ülker to a 24-41 halftime lead.
But Kazan, which scored just nine second-quarter points, came alive after the break. Henry Domercant took over in the fourth quarter to give Kazan the lead.
Domercant finished with 16 points and three blocks. “We were losing in the first half, after which we made corrections and started to play much better,” Domercant said. “We played an aggressive game and showed sporting character. We gave all we had to the game, tried to do the maximum we could in defense and in offense.”