Spartak St. Petersburg remained unbeaten in the Eurocup after downing BK Banvit 80-71 in Last 16 Group K in a clash of Game 1 winners. Spartak is now the exclusive leader of the group with a 2-0 record. Big man Loukas Mavrokefalides led the winners with an outstanding performance of 29 points and 8 rebounds. Patrick Beverley added 13 points plus 5 assists and Valery Likhodey scored 11. Chuck Davis scored 16 to lead Banvit, Baris Emris netted 13 and Keith Simmons posted 12 with 7 boards. With the game tied at 69-69 and 78 seconds left, Mavrokefalides completed a three-point-play and Beverley stole and slammed the ball to put the game in Spartak’s pocket.
Cliff Hammonds and Vladimir Dragicevic exchanged layups to open the scoring before Mavrokefalides posted back-to-back shots from downtown to give an 8-6 margin to the hosts. A Simmons three pointer gave again an 8-9 lead to Banvit, but a 7-0 run capped by Beverley put Spartak on top 17-11. Simmons completed a three-point-play, which was answered by Miha Zupan from beyond the arc for 20-14. Kenan Bajramovic stepped in and scored from mid-range and Lance Williams nailed a pair of free throws to make it a 2-point game, however Mavrokefalides with a jumper gave a 24-20 margin to the home team at the end of the first quarter. Zupan from downtown increased the cushion to 27-20 at the beginning of the second quarter. Baris Ermis found two easy in the open court for 29-24, before Mavrokefalides and Erkan Veyseloglu scored. Three free throws posted by Janis Strelnieks gave a 34-26 advantage to Spartak, but Cemal Nalga with a power moves closed within 34-29. But Likhodey from long distance and free throws by Yotam Halperin and Beverley gave a double-digit cushion to the hosts. Izzet Turkylmaz stole the ball to launch Simmons into the break for a slam and 40-31. An unstoppable Mavrokefalides scored, but was copied by Ermis in the open court. In the last minute of the quarter, Dragicevic and Williams scored in the paint, Serkan Erdogan cut the difference to 46-40, but a three-point shot by Beverley gave the final 49-40 margin to Spartak at halftime.
Ermis opened the third quarter with 6 consecutive points for Banvit, but Mavrokefalides was able to hit a jumper for the home team to keep Spartak up 51-46 after three-and-a-half minutes. The big man remained on fire with a layup to help push the scoreboard to 56-48. Davis scored 6 in a row from the foul line for Banvit to close within 56-54. Mavrokefalides and Nalga traded scored short jumpers. Then Victor Keyru from the foul line made it 60-56 after 30 minutes. A Likhodey jumper opened the last 10 minutes. Bajramovic answered before Davis made it 62-59. Beverley and Zupan combined for 5 points to try again to escape. A Simmons layup put Banvit again close at 67-63, and after 2 free throws by Halperin , Williams and Davis in the paint scored to tie the game at 69-69 with 1.18 remaining on the game clock. A three-point-play by Mavrokefalides gave a 72-69 cushion to Spartak, then a dunk by Beverley after his own steal sealed the win for the team from St. Petersburg. In the remaining seconds, free throws by Mavrokefalides and Ermis and a three-pointer by Likhodey with 4 seconds left fixed the final 80-71 on the scoreboard.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012