Grescrap Bizkaia outlasted Caja Laboral 84-89
A local derby played for the first time on the international stage saw Gescrap BB rally for a huge 84-89 victory over archrival Caja Laboral before a shocked home crowd in Vitoria, Spain on Wednesday. Gescrap raised its Group A record to 2-3 and will be tied for fourth place. Caja Laboral lost its second straight and will share a mutliple tie for first place at 3-2. Except for a pair of third-quarter possessions, Gescrap had led the whole game until Caja Laboral surged ahead 81-76 with 3 minutes left. That's when Gescrap reacted with a 0-11 run ingited by Alex Mumbru from downtown. Kostas Vasiliadis sealed the victory at the foul line, sending Gescrap just 60 kilometers up the road to Bilbao with something to celebrate. Vasiliadis led the winners with 21 points while making 3 of 3 triples and 6 of 6 free throws. Mumbru followed with 14 points, Marko Banic 12 and D'or Fischer 10 for Gescrap, which had great shooting accuracy across the board: 61% on two-pointers, 57% on triples and 85% on free throws. Caja Laboral shot much worse, except for at the free throw line, and paid for it with a stinging home loss. Mirze Teletovic led the hosts with 26 points and 8 rebounds. He was seconded by Pablo Prigioni with 17 points and Fernando San Emeterio with 13.
Vasiliadis drilled a jumper and Roger Grimau drove to the basket as Gescrap rushed ahead 0-4 and Banic added to the lead with a tough shot inside. Even after Teletovic got a rise out of the crowd with a three-pointer, Vasiliadis answered with his own and Jackson finished a fastbreak as the visitors took over the scoreboard, 3-11. After a much-needed Caja Laboral timeout, Ribas and Teletovic swished two-pointers, but Banic and D'or Fischer answered with baseline jumpers to keep Gescrap ahead 7-13. Fischer and Jackson boosted the difference to a high of 11-19 before Caja Laboral responded again. With a couple free throws by Prigioni and a bank shot by Teletovic, the hosts pulled within 15-20, but Alex Mumbru got 2 free throws back for Gescrap. Milko Bjelica dunked an offensive rebound for Caja Laboral, but Jackson put the finishing touch on a great first quarter by Gescrap, drilling a face-up triple to keep the visitors in charge, 17-25 after 10 minutes.
Ribas ended a quiet first minute of the second quarter with a pick-pocket steal and swinging dunk that awoke the crowd in Vitoria. Janis Blums ran the break and fed Banic to answer back, but otherwise the scoring stalled as defenses took over and bodies hit the floor. Nemanja Bjelica ended the drought with a triple that pulled Caja Laboral within 22-27. He was answered with a shorter jumper from Raul Lopez. When Blums hit another shot, Gescrap had matched its high lead, 22-31, but Nemanja Bjelica rocked another three-pointer from the arc. His foul at the other end, however, resulted in a technical for complaining that Gescrap turned into a five-point play when Vasiliadis drilled a triple at 25-36 for the game's first double-digit lead. San Emeterio put the hosts on his back then, with free throws and a jumper to make it 31-38. But Gescrap would not be denied as Grimau appeared at the arc to drop a three-pointer at 31-41. A minute was left, however, enough for Teletovic to come to Caja Laboral's rescue with a pair of free throws and a step-back triple 9 seconds before the buzzer, cutting the difference in half, to 36-41 at halftime.
Grimau struck first in the second half, a jumper from the top of the lane. San Emeterio got Caja Laboral's scoring resumed with a fall-back layup and a clutch triple, making it a 10-0 run since the last minute of the first half. Suddenly, Caja Laboral was within 41-43, so when Jackson got hit with an unsportsmanlike foul, Prigioni was able to tie it up, 43-43, at the free throw line. Banic would not let the lead go, however, and posted up for a basket before Vasiliadis blasted his third triple at 38-43. Just as quickly, another Caja Laboral player stepped up as Milko Bjelica scored inside then stepped outside for a triple and another tie, 48-48. Vasiliadis responded with a jumper, but on a second-chance possession, Pablo Prigioni was left open to swish a three-pointer that meant Caja Laboral's first lead all night, 50-51. Gescrap refused to let that be a turning point, first as Josh Fisher fed D'or Fischer for an alley-oop dunk, then with Mumbru blasting from 7 meters to make it 53-55. When Blums leaped off a screen to blast another triple and fed Fischer on the break for a dunk, the visitors had surged ahead again, 54-60. Now Teletovic answered with a three-point play, but 3 of 4 free throws from Dimitrios Mavroeidis matched him as Gescrap retained a four-point lead, 62-66, after 30 minutes.
Mumbru inspired his teammates with a basket-plus-free throw combo, while getting knocked down, to open the final quarter at 62-69. After a Caja Laboral timeout, Prigioni roused the crowd with an off-balance triple, then Kevin Seraphin downed 2 free throws, quickly cutting the difference to 67-69. Fisher answered with his first basket of the game for Gescrap, while San Emeterio rattled in a lane jumper for a 69-71 scoreboard with 7 minutes left. Just as he had done one quarter earlier, Prigioni calmly dropped a go-ahead three-pointer for his team's third lead all game, 72-71. That was another crowd-pleaser, but not so much as Teletovic's follow-up triple from the arc on a broken, high-speed fastbreak to put the hosts up 75-71. Gescrap took a timeout and got free throws from Vasiliadis, but Seraphin's put-back and free throw kept Caja Laboral up 78-73. After an exchange of free throws, Banic returned for a jumper after great ball movement that cut the difference to 79-76. Seraphin came up big with a tip-in, but when Gescrap seemed done, Mumbru drilled fastbreak triple and Vasiliadis drove for the game-tying layup, 81-81 with 1:25 to play. Vasiliaidis needed just a few of those seconds to take the lead back on a steal and layup, then fed Banic for a baseline jumper and a 81-85 scoreboard. Another steal and free throws by Vasilaidis made it a 0-10 run and an 81-87 lead. Prigioni raced the other way for a layup plus free throw at 84-87 with still 4 seconds left, but Vasilaidis made sure on the other foul line, giving Gescrap a huge victory to celebrate on a short ride home.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011