Unicaja stops Madrid's winning streak
Unicaja Malaga broke its three-game losing streak in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague regular season by topping Real Madrid 80-75 in front of over 10,000 fans at Palacio de Deportes Jose Maria Martin Carpena on Friday. Unicaja improved to 8-11 in the standings while Madrid dropped to 12-7 and saw its seven-game winning streak, the longest in the EuroLeague this season, come to an end. Ray McCallum and Adam Waczynski led the winners with 15 points apiece. Nemanja Nedovic had 11 while Jeff Brooks got 10 for Unicaja. Luka Doncic led Madrid with 16 points while Jaycee Carroll and Rudy Fernandez each had 10 for the guests. Waczynski and Brooks combined for all points in an 11-0 run that allowed Unicaja to keep a 20-15 lead at the end of the first quarter. Nedovic and James Augustine soon boosted the hosts' lead to 30-15 early in the second quarter. Fernandez and Doncic allowed Madrid to get a bit closer, 38-27, at halftime. A 0-9 run which Fernandez capped with a three-pointer tied the game, 48-48, late in the third quarter, but McCallum and Waczysnki made Unicaja regain a 57-52 edge after 30 minutes. Waczynski, Augustine and McCallum took over in the fourth quarter and a three-pointer by Nedovic allowed Unicaja to put the victory on ice.
Trey Thompkins got Madrid going with a three-pointer by Waczynski answered from downtown and Brooks hit two from beyond the arc for a 9-3 Unicaja lead. Madrid kept picking up turnovers - four in the opening six minutes - while a jumper by Waczynski capped an 11-0 Unicaja run. Walter Tavares scored down low and Santi Yusta added a driving layup but Carlos Suarez restored a 13-7 lead. Fabien Causeur, Mo Soluade and Doncic joined the three-point shootout, but Suarez and McCallum scored around the basket for a 20-15 Unicaja lead after 10 minutes. McCallum took over with a tip-in early in the second quarter. Augustine hit a jumper and Nedovic buried a three-pointer that made it a double-digit game, 27-15. Augustine capped a 12-0 Unicaja run with a dunk, as Jeffery Taylor and Fernandez each struck from downtown for a 30-21 Madrid deficit. Doncic stepped up for Madrid but Gio Shermadini followed a layup with free throws, and consecutive layups by Nedovic and McCallum restored a 38-27 Unicaja lead at halftime.
Tavares scored again after the break and a three-pointer by Carroll gave Madrid hope at 38-32. Brooks dunked, Nedovic scored in penetration and a three-pointer by Waczynski ignited the crowd at 45-34. Tavares took over with a tip-in and three-pointers by Thompkins and Doncic kept Madrid within 48-42. A three-pointer by Fernandez soon tied the game, 48-48, after a 0-9 run. McCallum had four points in a 6-0 run and Waczynski banked in a buzzer-beating triple that gave Unicaja fresh air, 57-52, after 30 minutes. Waczynski buried another three-pointer early in the fourth quarter and Dragan Milosavljevic copied him soon after that for a 63-54 Unicaja lead. Facu Campazzo and Milosavljevic traded triples and a jumper by Augustine kept Unicaja fully in charge, 68-59, with four minutes to go. Augustine scored again, McCallum hit free throws and a big triple by Nedovic sealed the outcome, 77-64, as Madrid never recovered.
Both teams play at home next Thursday - Unicaja hosts Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz and Madrid welcomes Anadolu Efes Istanbul.
Friday, January 19, 2018