Olympiacos beats Efes in Euro battle
ATHENS - Hürriyet Daily News
Anadolu Efes Esteban Batista (C) and Tarence Kinsey (R) fight for the ball with Olympiacos’ Kostas Papanikolaou (L) during the two teams’ Turkish Airlines Euroleague match at the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Piraeus near Athens.Olympiacos got its first win in the Group E, beating Anadolu Efes on the road to the Top 8 of the Turkish Airlines Euroleague, beating its Turkish rival 83-65 on Feb. 1.
The Greek side dominated the fourth quarter en route to a convincing 83-65 victory over Efes at the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Piraeus near Athens. The result gives the Reds their first win of the Top 16 and tied them with Efes at 1-2.
In the other game of the group, Galatasaray was visiting unbeaten leader CSKA Moscow yesterday. The game was still in progress as the Hürriyet Daily News went to press.
The game was tied at 53-53 through three quarters, but Kostas Sloukas led the way as the hosts started the quarter 24-5 and put the game away.
“We were behind for 30 minutes and when we managed to tie the game, we suffered a collapse,” Anadolu Efes coach Ufuk Sarıca was quoted as saying on the official Euroleague website. “Thanks to the zone defense, we changed the momentum of the game, but Sloukas killed us with his great shots. Now we have another game at home and I hope that we will play much better.”
A big difference in the game was three-point shooting as Olympiacos made nine of 19 (47.4%) compared to one-for-8 shooting (12.5%) for Efes.
Vassilis Spanoulis paced the winners with 18 points, Slokas scored 10 fourth-quarter points among his career-high 15 and Joey Dorsey added 10. Stanko Barac paced Efes with 14 points and 8 rebounds, Sasha Vujacic scored 12 and Esteban Batista and Oliver Lafayette netted 11 each in defeat.
“It is a very important win, which we have lacked so far and will help us, especially in the psychology. We had a lot of pressure after we lost to CSKA Moscow and GS Medical Park two games, but we kept our concentration and did it,” Sloukas, the hero for Olympiacos said. “Regarding my game, I am trying to do my best in every game. It is great to enjoy a standing ovation from the fans and I am satisfied because I worked hard, especially in defense to get a place here.”
In other games, Unics Kazan dominated on the defensive end and got strong efforts from its trio of guards in slamming EA7 Emporio Armani Milan 59-44 to stay atop Group G with a 3-0 record, and Real Madrid bounced back from its first home loss this season by beating Gescrap BB 89-73 in the Group F.
Another Turkish team in the competition, Fenerbahçe Ülker, was hosting Panathinaikos yesterday in a bid to claim its second win the Group G.
Beşiktaş takes win After jersey crisis
Beşiktaş Milangaz shook off a jersey crisis Feb. 1 to beat Pardubice and qualify for the Eurochallenge quarterfinals.
The Istanbul team beat its Czech opponents 76-69 to cement second place in Group K in the third-tier European basketball competition, but the real talk of the night was not the win, but the jerseys. Beşiktaş had to play with newly tailored jerseys made in a Prague workshop on Feb. 1 because the team’s gear was initially forgotten in Istanbul by Turkish Airlines before heavy snowfall in Turkey meant the equipment could not be sent on subsequently.
After solving the crisis, Beşiktaş was comfortable on the court, beating Pardubice thanks to 26 points from Adam Morrison. Beşiktaş is second with three wins, trailing only Fuenlabrada.
Another Turkish team in the competition, Karşıyaka (2-2), is battling with Antwerp (1-3) and Triumph (1-3) for a quarterfinal spot behind Dragons (4-0).