Galatasaray edges Zielona Gora on late free throws
Galatasaray Liv Hospital survived a late challenge from Stelmet Zielona Gora for a 75-78 road win on Friday. The lead changed hands four times in the last two minutes, the last on Pops Mensah-Bonsu’s free throws with 18.1 seconds left. The hosts had two chances to regain the lead or tie the score after that, but missed and Carlos Arroyo added 2 more free throws in the closing seconds. Galatasaray improved to 2-2 in Group C, while Zielona Gora dropped to 1-3. Erwin Dudley paced Galatasaray with a career-high 21 points plus 8 rebounds, while Pops Mensah-Bonsu amassed 15 points and 9 rebounds, Arroyo scored 11 with 6 assists and Jamont Gordon added 10 points. Erving Walker scored 12 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter to spark the Zielina Gora comeback. Przemyslaw Zamojski also scored 17, Vladimir Dragicevic tallied 13 points and 9 rebounds and Craig Brackins scored 10 in defeat.
First quarter: Dudley’s 10 points give Galatasaray slim lead
Dragicevic tipped in a Christian Eyenga miss for the game’s first basket. Dudley’s jumper got Galatasaray on the scoreboard. Dudley converted a three-point play to put the visitors ahead, but Brackins attacked the offensive glass to make it 6-5. Zamojski picked up a loose ball and dished an alley-oop to Eyenga, who slammed it home. The visitors jumped in front again after a Mensah-Bonsu jumper and a Sinan Guler layup. Dudley remained an offensive resource as the teams traded baskets – and correspondingly leads. Guler scored a basket-plus foul on the break to give the visitors their biggest lead yet, 12-16. Zamojski countered with a three from the corner only to see Carlos Arroyo match him on the next play. Another Zamojski triple kept the hosts within 1. Eyenga brought the crowd to its feet with a follow slam. After a three-point play by Mensah-Bonsu and a layup by Dragicevic, the score was tied. Arroyo netted a short jumper and Dudley split free throws to give the visitors a 22-25 after 10 minutes.
Second quarter: Pops heats up to extend gap to double figures
Zoran Erceg connected from downtown to further boost Galatasaray. Zamojski countered with free throws before a Lukasz Koszarek jumper closed the gap to 2. However the Zielona Gora offense went cold just as Henry Domercant started to heat up. The scorer netted free throws and a three pointer to make it 26-35. Walker ended a three-minute scoring drought for the hosts with a three-pointer. He then added a basket in transition as the crowd got involved. Galatasaray went cold – including a pair of missed free throws from Pops, though Eyenga matched him from the line. A second trip to the line for Mensah Bonsu and a Gordon dish to Erceg underneath extended the lead. Then Gordon ran a pick-and-roll with Mensah-Bonsu, who finished an alley-oop lob with a two-handed jam for a double-digit advantage. Eyenga scored inside to restore some Zielona Gora hope. Craig Brackins added a three to bring his team within 36-43 at halftime.
Third quarter: Zielona Gora uses 10-0 run to stay close
Dudley drained a pair of jumpers to open the second half. Gordon free throws made it 36-49 before Dragicevic got the hosts going. The crowd roared with approval after a steal and slam from Zamojski. Zielona started to roll as Brackins and Koszarek hit back-to-back threes to cap a 10-0 run and cut the gap to 3. Dudley got 2 back at the line, but Zamojski kept the crowd in it with a long jumper. Dudley reached 20 points as he continued to keep Galatasaray ahead. Brackins dumped underneath to Dragicevic to make it 50-55. Dudley and Milan Macvan extended the lead to 8 from the line. Maciej Kucharek soared for a tip-in before Gordon buried a three to make it 52-61 at the end of the quarter.
Fourth quarter:Walker puts hosts ahead late, but Galatasaray survives
Walker netted a pair of free throws as Zielona Gora refused to let Galatasaray pull away. Zamojski free throws made it 56-61. A second-chance Zamojski three from the top of the key brought loud cheers. Mensah-Bonsu threw down a vicious slam at the other end for Galatasaray’s first points of the quarter, 59-63. Eyenga fouled out and Domercant sank a short jumper. Walker shined with an impressive spin move and layup to make it 61-65 midway through the quarter. After a timeout, Gordon sank a triple, however Zamojski kept his team alive with a tough three over Domercant. Arroyo hit back with a jumper and Gordon slalomed to the hoop for a layup and an 8-point edge with three-plus minutes left. When things looked grim for Zielona Gora, Walker hit a three, 67-72. After Dragicevic split free throws, Walker drained his third three of the night and it was suddenly a 1-point game! Walker tied it and put his team in front for the first time since the first quarter with 2 free throws with 1:38 left on the clock. Arroyo went around the Zielona Gora defense for a layup with 55 seconds left, but Koszarek played a two-man game with Dragicevic, whose layup made it 75-74 with 42 seconds to go. Mensah-Bonsu’s offensive rebound got him back to the line with 18.1 seconds left. He made both foul shots to put his team ahead again. Brackins missed a tough shot at the rim in the closing seconds. Arroyo got the rebound, was fouled and made 2 free throws with 3 seconds left. Koszarek missed along three at the buzzer as Galatasaray ran off with the win.
Friday, November 8, 2013