Bahçeşehir College wins to claim FIBA Europe Cup trophy
The Istanbul club became the competition’s first winner from Turkey after securing an overall 162-143 triumph in front of a FIBA Europe Cup Final record crowd of 13,485.
Jamar Smith led the scorers with 17 points, while Jamal Jones added 14 in addition to Sam Dekker and Tarik Black’s 12 points each. Dekker and Black had key roles in closing out the game in the last five minutes.
On the Italian team’s side, Arturs Strautins and Stephen Mark Thompson Jr. logged 19 points each as the only double-digit scorers for their squad.
Strautins also grabbed 11 boards while Andrea Cinciarini dished out nine assists next to his eight points. He also turned the ball over seven times, and his performance was a far cry from the previous display in Game 1 when he banked 20 points.
Bahçeşehir College coach Erhan Ernak was delighted in clinching the trophy, but said it was just the beginning for the club.
“We are very happy, but winning this cup was one of our targets this season,” he told a post-game press conference.
“Now we have set our eyes on the Turkish league trophy,” Ernak said, adding the club aimed to continue to develop.
“We are a new club, but we have a very strong group behind us, one of the biggest education groups in Europe,” he said. “With their support, we will be going for the Champions League next season.”
It is a huge success for Bahçeşehir, making a historic achievement for the club that was founded just five years ago.
It is the club’s first-ever trophy and they did it on the European stage where it debuted in 2019. Bahçeşehir was
also the semifinalist in FIBA Europe Cup in the 2019-20 campaign.
Meanwhile, another Turkish basketball club, Frutti Extra Bursaspor, claimed a ticket to the 7Days Eurocup semifinals.
Bursaspor lived another magic night on the road when it defeated Cedevita Olimpija Ljubljana 85-83 at Arena Stozice on the evening of April 27 to set up a semifinal clash with Morabanc Andorra.
Derek Needham made 10 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter to pace the winner. John Holland posted 16 and seven boards, Onuralp Bitim chipped in 14 points and Andrew Andrews followed with 12.
Yogi Ferrell was Cedevita’s top scorer with 20 points, while Jacob Pullen, Zach Auguste, Edo Muric and Jaka Blazic netted 15, 13, 12 and 10, respectively, in the losing effort.
The semifinal game will be played at Poliesportiu D’andorra on May 3.