Redding’s last second shot lifts ALBA over Unicaja
ALBA Berlin rallied late to edge Unicaja Malaga 79-78 on Reggie Redding’s last second layup at O2 World in the German capital on Thursday. It was the second straight thriller between the sides, Unicaja won on Kostas Vasileiadis’s buzzer-beating three last month in Malaga. This time the visitors were in control until a 14-2 fourth-quarter run put ALBA up 70-65. Unicaja came back, tied it on Fran Vazquez free throws with 26 seconds left. When Jayson Granger stole a pass and drew a foul with the score tied and 6 seconds left, the momentum was all Unicaja. But Granger split the free throws and Redding came out the hero with the game-winning layup. Redding led the ALBA attack with 17 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. Alex Renfroe and Jamel McLean added 12 points apiece and Leon Radosevic scored 11 as ALBA improved to 3-4. Kostas Vasileiadis and Ryan Toolson scored 15 each for Unicaja, which slipped to 4-3.
First quarter: Unicaja rallies to slim lead on Green’s three
ALBA won the opening tip and went on top through Radosevic’s follow-slam. After a Vasileiadis triple got Unicaja going, Radosevic followed his own miss in and Reggie Redding took a steal in for a slam. Vasileiadis’s reverse layup brought the visitors within 6-5. The hosts were up by 4 after a long Radosevic jumper. McLean’s layup started a break that Redding finished with a layup. Vasileiadis’s layup and Ryan Toolson free throws drew Unicaja within 13-11. Alex Renfroe answered with a three on the ensuing possession, but Mindaugas Kuzminskas powered his way to a layup at the other end. Vojdan Stojanovski came down the lane for a floater, but the fast pace continued as Toolson sank a three-pointer to make it 18-16. Jayson Granger got into the paint for a short jumper that tied the score. McLean leapt for a one-handed rebound and slam, but a Caleb Green triple gave Unicaja a 20-21 lead after 10 minutes.
Second quarter: Strong play from Toolson, Golubovic lifts visitors
Vladimir Golubovic banked in a shot at one end, but gave the points back with goaltending at the other. Toolson and Akeem Vargas traded threes. Toolson drilled his third three of the game to make it 27-29, but Hammonds found an open Redding underneath to tie it. Carlos Suarez went inside for 2 points; Redding scored on the offensive glass at the other end. Golubovic scored from the low post. His free throws put Unicaja up 31-35. The big man remained a dominant force with a tip in of a Jon Stefansson miss on the break. Redding soared for a tip in to narrow the gap to 4. Stefansson knocked down a three for Unicaja’s biggest lead yet, 33-40. Redding found a cutting Banic for a layup. Kuzminskas tipped in a Granger miss, but McLean drove the baseline. There was just enough time for one last Unicaja shot and Kuzminskas took advantage for a buzzer-beating triple and a 37-45 lead.
Third quarter: ALBA rallies to within 2, Vasileiadis leads response
Vasileiadis fired in a three on the first possession of the second half as Unicaja took the game’s first double-digit lead. Redding narrowed the gap with a three from the right wing. Hammonds’s first triple made it 44-50. Renfroe added 2 from the charity stripe and after a long jumper from Vasileiadis, Niels Giffey drew the hosts within 49-52. However Vasileiadis responded with a ridiculously long triple. Neither team managed points for more than two minutes until Granger sank a long jumper. Will Thomas corralled an air ball to restore a double-digit lead for the visitors. After a run of free throws at both ends, the visitors led 53-61 through three quarters.
Fourth quarter: Redding is the hero in the final second
The quarter opened quietly with two scoreless minutes. Giffey drained a three to inspire the hosts. Toolson ended a three-minute scoreless spell for Unicaja, but Renfroe fed Radosevic for a slam and Banic brought the hosts within 3. Green scored for the visitors, but a Hammonds triple made it 63-65 midway through the fourth quarter. Hammonds blocked a Toolson jumper at one end and Banic used a spin move to tie the game at the other. The crowd erupted after a Renfroe triple gave ALBA the lead and soon after Redding finished a fast break with a layup to cap a 14-2 charge that made it 70-65. Granger’s jumper brought Unicaja within a shot with three minutes left and Vazquez used his long arms to pick off a pass and take it for a slam. Redding went through the Unicaja defense for a layup. Suarez drained a long jumper as the teams traded shots. Granger’s pull-up jumper tied the game at 75-75 with a minute to go. Hammonds drove into the paint to restore the ALBA lead. Vazquez tied it again with 2 free throws with 26 seconds remaining. ALBA took the ball out underneath with 7.4 seconds left, but Granger stole the ball, was fouled and split free throws as Unicaja took a 77-78 edge. ALBA got the ball back and – after a timeout – gave the ball to Redding, whose layup went in with 0.2 seconds left to win it for the hosts.
Thursday, November 27, 2014