2015-16Top 16Round 3
January 14, 2016 CET: 20:45
Local time: 20:45 PALACIO DE DEPORTES JOSE MARIA MARTIN CARPENA

Unicaja Malaga blasts Cedevita

Unicaja Malaga led from start to finish en route to a big 90-67 win over visiting Cedevita Zagreb on Thursday night. Unicaja improved to 2-1 for a share of second place in Group E, while Cedevita dropped to 1-2. Unicaja pulled down 11 offensive rebounds and hit 7 three-pointers in the first half, which allowed it to build a comfortable 52-31 halftime lead. Cedevita never came closer than 15 points rest of the way. Unicaja finished with 19 offensive rebounds and outrebounded the visitors 43-23. Mindaugas Kuzminskas led the hosts with 17 points, Daniel Diez shot 4-for-5 from long range to score 16 points, and Carlos Suarez netted 11 in victory. Luka Babic led Cedevita with 24 points, while Jacob Pullen netted 16 in the losing effort.

First quarter: Hosts take control from the start

Will Thomas opened the encounter with a basket-plus-foul, and Richard Hendrix scored inside to make it 5-0. Miro Bilan opened Cedevita's account with a put-back, and Babic drove for a layup, but a three-pointer and a put-back by Kuzminskas made it 10-4. Babic drove the lane again, but Jamar Smith nailed a long jumper and DeMarcus Nelson made a tough runner midway through the quarter for a 14-6 lead. After a timeout, Fran Vazquez scored from close range to open a double-digit lead. Babic drove for another layup, but Nelson drove through the traffic for another off-balance runner. A tip-in and a layup from Vazquez opened a 14-point margin as Unicaja took control with 7 offensive rebounds in the first 10 minutes. James White and Suarez traded corner threes before Kuzminskas drove coast-to-coast for a three-point play and 27-11 cushion. Pullen hit a triple for the visitors to end the quarter at 27-14.

Second quarter: Diez scores 13 points as Unicaja runs away

Karlo Zganec scored from close range, but great passing from the entire Unicaja team resulted with Vazquez making a basket inside and Suarez from the outside to open a 16-point lead. Babic and Diez traded three-pointers and another three from Suarez made it 39-19 midway through the quarter. Bilan made a steal and dished a no-look bounce pass for a Fran Pilepic fastbreak layup. Arapovic and Bilan scored inside for Cedevita, but Diez had consecutive put-backs for the hosts, who were dominating the offensive glass with 11 offensive rebounds compared with Cedevita’s 9 total boards at that point. After a timeout, Diez hit a triple to put Unicaja up 46-25. Arapovic had consecutive put-backs for the visitors, but Smith and Diez answered each time with a three-pointer to open a 52-39 lead, before Pullen finished the half with a tough driving layup, making it 52-31 at halftime.

Third quarter: Pullen sparks Cedevita offense, Unicaja stays in control

Cedevita had energy for the start of the second half. After an Arapovic dunk, Babic added a driving layup and a floater to close within 52-37. Nearly four minutes passed until Unicaja scored, which came on Kuzminskas’s put-back-plus-foul. He followed it with jumper to re-establish a 20-point margin. Pullen hit a triple, but a pair of steals led to baskets from Alberto Diaz and a dunk by Kuzminskas. Smith added a triple, but Pullen answered with back-to-back threes for the visitors. Hendrix got a roll on a short jumper then Diez and Suarez hit triple to get the margin over 20 again. Suarez added a long jumper, and Pullen finished the quarter making a pair of foul shots to put 71-50 on the scoreboard.

Fourth quarter: The hosts cruise to a big win

Luka Zoric hit a short fadaway jumper and Kuzminskas scored inside on the other end. Edwin Jackson drove for a floater and Diez nailed a long triple that increased the margin to 80-52. Babic hit a corner triple and Henry Walker made a put-back dunk, before Nemanja Nedovic drove for an easy layup and an 82-57 advantage. Jack Cooley scored inside for Unicaja, and Babic knocked down a corner three for the visitors. Before the game’s end, Cooley and White traded close range baskets and Smith and Babic traded threes to round out the scoring.

Unicaja Malaga celebrates - EB15
Thursday, January 14, 2016
Euroleague.net
Referees: VIATOR, EDDIE (FRA), LATISEVS, OLEGS (LAT), FOUFIS, IOANNIS (GRE)
Attendance: 5972
By Quarter1234
Unicaja Malaga27251919
Cedevita Zagreb14171917
End of Quarter1234
Unicaja Malaga27527190
Cedevita Zagreb14315067
Unicaja Malaga
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 JACKSON, EDWIN 16:15 2 1/1 0/2     1 1 6   4       1 4
4 DIAZ, ALBERTO 15:16 5 1/2 1/4   2 1 3   1       2   3
7 HENDRIX, RICHARD 17:00 5 2/5   1/2   4 4 3 1 1     3 1 6
10 THOMAS, WILL 19:01 6 1/3 1/3 1/1 5 1 6 1         1 2 10
11 DIEZ, DANIEL 18:18 16 2/3 4/5   2 2 4           1   17
12 SUAREZ, CARLOS 20:59 11 2/2 2/4 1/2   4 4 2 4 3 1     2 18
15 SMITH, JAMAR 23:45 8 1/4 2/4         5   1     2 1 6
16 NEDOVIC, NEMANJA 6:53 2 1/1 0/2     1 1 1         1 1 2
17 VAZQUEZ, FRAN 7:59 8 4/5     2 1 3     2     1 1 8
19 KUZMINSKAS, MINDAUGAS 21:42 17 6/10 1/3 2/2 3 2 5 1 1     2 1 4 19
20 NELSON, DEMARCUS 17:51 4 2/5 0/1   1 1 2 3   1 1   1 1 5
45 COOLEY, JACK 15:01 6 2/2   2/4 1 4 5   2 1     3 4 11
Team           3 2 5     1         4
Totals 200:00 90 25/43 11/28 7/11 19 24 43 22 9 14 2 2 16 18 113
        58.1% 39.3% 63.6%
Head coach: PLAZA, JOAN
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Cedevita Zagreb
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 PULLEN, JACOB 26:31 16 1/5 4/8 2/2 1   1 3   2   1   4 13
4 WHITE, JAMES 29:06 7 1/4 1/2 2/2   2 2   2 2   1 3 1 2
6 KATIC, TONI DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 PILEPIC, FRAN 14:48 2 1/1 0/2     1 1 2         2   1
9 BABIC, LUKA 29:53 24 5/6 4/7 2/2   1 1   2 4     2 2 19
11 ZGANEC, KARLO 9:02 2 1/1           1   1     2    
12 WALKER, HENRY 19:11 2 1/1 0/5   1 3 4 2     1     1 5
13 MUSA, DZANAN 3:51               1             1
15 BILAN, MIRO 28:49 4 2/7     3 3 6 4 2 2 1   1 1 10
20 GORDIC, NEMANJA 15:57   0/2       1 1 1   3     2 4 -1
21 ZORIC, LUKA 7:02 2 1/3               1     4 1 -4
35 ARAPOVIC, MARKO 15:50 8 4/5   0/1 3 2 5           2 2 11
Team           1 1 2               2
Totals 200:00 67 17/35 9/24 6/7 9 14 23 14 6 15 2 2 18 16 59
        48.6% 37.5% 85.7%
Head coach: MRSIC, VELJKO

Head Coaches

PLAZA, JOAN
Unicaja Malaga
"At some point, we were playing our best game this season, but we lost control in the end and had a lot of turnovers in a row. It is something that happened to us during the first part of the season. We hope it will not happen again. When we play against these kind of talented players, like Pullen, we have to play team defense, not one-on-one, so we need to keep improving. It is important to win at home by a good margin, as well as the playing level we showed in a lot of moments. At the end of the game, we had a moment in which we were playing like Magic Johnson - and there is only one Magic Johnson. It is true that I like us to have fun on the court, it is one of the rules in our locker room, but we had to control the game because it was important to keep the points difference, but we won by a good margin in the end."
MRSIC, VELJKO
Cedevita Zagreb
"They looked liked they are from another planet compared to us. Like they are a senior team and we are juniors. Out of 33 balls that bounced off our rim, they pulled down 19 offensive rebounds, and we grabbed 14 defensive. That says everything. We warned the players about that before the game. One thing is that Unicaja is physically dominant over us, more athletic than us, but another is that this is the second game in few days we played without energy and enough focus to compete on this level. We will change that right away; we can see which players are not on the level we need, and I will not allow that any player hurts the result of the team."

Players

KUZMINSKAS, MINDAUGAS
Unicaja Malaga
"For us it is a very important victory. We have to defend our home court and win every game here in Malaga. We came out very focused and we kept it for 40 minutes. In the locker room after the game, we have had only a few minutes because we have to continue working for the games ahead. "
BABIC, LUKA
Cedevita Zagreb
"We knew it will be tough, we knew they are the best offensive rebounding team, and it is inadmissible to allow 19 offensive rebounds. That’s the key to this loss. When they get so many offensive rebounds, then their shot gets going, and they hit a lot of shots from the outside. But it is mostly our fault, we should analyze it and this should never happen again. We knew who we are playing against. We wanted to be in the Top 16, we want to play and compete, and we want to get back to the rhythm we had until a week ago. "