Barcelona edges Zalgiris in a thriller
In a high-scoring showdown that went down to the final seconds, FC Barcelona Lassa grabbed its third consecutive win by downing Zalgiris Kaunas 92-86 at Palau Blaugrana on Thursday. Barcelona improved to 4-2, while Zalgiris dropped to 1-5. Tyrese Rice led the winners with 20 points of which 18 came in the second half. Petteri Koponen added 16, Sasha Vezenkov 12, Marcus Eriksson scored a EuroLeague career-high 11 points, Ante Tomic contributed 10 and Joey Dorsey posted 9 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks for Barcelona. Brock Motum led Zalgiris with a EuroLeague career-high 26 points on 7-of-7 two-point shooting and 4-of-5 on three-pointers. Paulius Jankunas added 12 points, Antanas Kavaliauskas had 10 while Augusto Lima posted 7 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Barcelona made 25 of 29 free throws (86.2%) and committed just 8 turnovers in compiling a team performance index rating of 121.
Tomic got Barcelona going, following a layup with a mid-range jumper in a 6-0 opening run. Kavaliauskas stepped up with back-to-back layups, but Tomic and Rice kept the hosts way ahead, 9-4. Renaldas Seibutis and Jankunas nailed consecutive jumpers, but Eriksson struck from downtown and got help from Dorsey and Vezenkov to keep Barcelona ahead, 16-12, after 10 minutes. Vezenkov buried a corner triple early in the second quarter, but Lima and Arturas Milaknis kept Zalgiris within 19-16. Koponen hit a floater and Dorsey added a put-back layup, but Zalgiris found a go-to guy in Jankunas, who kept his team within 28-26. Motum took over with 7 quick points and free throws by Leo Westermann gave Zalgiris its first lead, 33-35. A three-pointer by Brad Oleson fixed the halftime score at 36-35. A layup by Lima put Zalgiris back ahead, 39-40, soon after the break. Rice and an outstanding Eriksson rescued Barcelona, making the guests call timeout at 48-45. Lima scored again and a three-pointer by Kevin Pangos provided another lead change, 48-50. Eriksson and Tomic fueled a 7-0 run that gave the hosts a 55-52 edge. Rice stepped up for Barcelona once Zalgiris entered the foul penalty, an acrobatic alley-oop layup by Oleson and a three-point play by Tomic gave the hosts fresh air, 65-56, before Lekavicius beat the third quarter buzzer with a midcourt shot. Rice and Koponen kept Barcelona way ahead, 71-64, early in the fourth quarter. Dorsey scored down low to make it a double-digit game, 78-68, with less than six minutes left. Motum tried to change things with back-to-back triples and a backdoor layup that made it a three-point game, 80-77. Vezenkov and Rice stepped up in crunch time for an 86-79 lead in the next-to-last minute, but Edgaras Ulanovas and Kavaliauskas still brought Zalgiris back in the game, 88-86. Rice and Dorsey hit free throws to seal the outcome down the stretch.
Thursday, November 10, 2016