Knowing that no Euroleague game is over until the final buzzer sounds, Scavolini Pesaro used overtime to add its second win in as many tries when it beat Adecco Asvel 73-82 in Group C on the road at Villeurbanne, France on Thursday. Scavolini rallied from 14 down in the final 3 minutes of regulation time and dominated the extra period to raise its record to 2-0, while Asvel now sits at 0-2 due to this heartbreaking loss. Charles Smith led the winners with 22 points, but Teemu Rannikko was Scavolini's hero with 17 points, including 3 three-pointers in crunch time to save Scavolini. Hanno Mottola added 14 points and 11 rebounds for Scavolini, while Marko Milic had 12 points, including a tip-in with 2.3 seconds to go which sent the game to overtime at 70-70. Terrell Lyday had 18 points for Asvel, Stephane Pelle added a monster double-double, 15 points and 20 rebounds, while Karim Souchu had 14 points and Tomislav Ruzic 12.
Scavolini started by looking for Alessandro Frosini and Mottola inside, where their layups gave the guests a quick 2-4 lead. Asvel had trouble controlling Scavolini's balanced offense, as German Scarone drilled a three-pointer, which Milic followed with free throws and Smith with a driving layup for a 6-11 margin. All the Scavolini starters had scored in just 4 minutes. Asvel soon tied, however, as Lyday's triple made it 11-11, but Smith stepped up with 5 quick points for the guests. Asvel struggled now against Scavolini's man-to-man defense, but finally Souchu and Pelle scored in the last minute to bring Asvel within 18-20 after 10 minutes.
It was Scavolini's turn to struggle with 4 scoreless minutes to start the second quarter. Lyday took over with a bomb from downtown and a three-point play in a 8-0 run capped by Tomislav's Ruzic six-meter jumper which gave Asvel a 26-20 lead after 14 minutes. Scavolini switched to 3-2 zone defense and looked for Mottola inside on offensie. He delivered with 5 unanswered points to bring his team back within 26-25, but Asvel was ready with answers. Ruzic followed Danny Miller's three-pointer with a pair of easy baskets to push Asvel's lead to 33-25. Asvel's defense was outstanding, as Scavolini managed to make only 2 shots from the field in the second period, but even then, free throws by Mottola, Frosini and Rannikko and a layup by Smith brought the guests within 35-32 at halftime.
Asvel took control after halftime, when Huseyin Besok ignited a 7-0 run in which Lyday scored 5 points and the home lead reached double digits, 42-32. James Forrest answered for Scavolini, but Lyday was the man now, both scoring and running Asvel's offense. Besok made a left-handed jump hook to make it 47-37, but Smith answered from downtown and Scarone added a long two-pointer to give Scavolini some fresh air at 47-42. It didn't last long, however, as another Asvel defensive exhibition held Scavolini scoreless for almost 4 minutes. Meanwhile, Pelle, Ruzic and Yohann Sangare powered the hosts to a game-high 56-42 lead, which Rannikko, with a three from the right corner, cut to 56-45 entering the final quarter.
Rannikko's triple turned out to be an omen, but early in the fourth quarter, Asvel still controlled the game with defense. Pelle slashed to the basket for a 59-47 lead with 7 minutes to go. Rannikko hit a three, which Smith followed with a basket to give Scavolini some hope at 59-52. Even then, the hyperactive Pelle controlled the boards for Asvel. When Souchu drilled a three, Ruzic added a basket and Lyday a wild dunk, Asvel's lead was at 68-54 with 3 minutes to go. Scavolini needed a miracle, and Rannikko delivered one with 3 consecutive three-pointers. Smith added another shot from downtown and Milic had a fast break dunk and a tip-in which tied the game with 2.3 seconds to go. As such, Scavolini used a 2-16 run to send the game to overtime, as local fans could not believe their eyes.
Both teams had a slow start in the extra period until Mottola scored on a put-back layup to give Scavolini its first lead of the game since the opening period, 70-72. Asvel was still thinking on Scavolini's rally, while Smith made a big three off a screen and Milic added an outstanding reverse layup to power the guests to a 70-77 margin. Asvel had already lost control, as the hosts went scoreless for the opening 3 minutes in overtime, while Milic' free throws sealed the win at 70-79. Souchu scored near the basket, but it was too late, as Scavolini cruised to a miracle comeback win!
Thursday, November 11, 2004