Strasbourg beats Zalgiris on Campbell's buzzer-beater
Strasbourg registered its second win in Group B by edging Zalgiris Kaunas 77-76 on a buzzer-beating three-pointer by Louis Campbell. Strasbourg improved to 2-6 in Group A and Zalgiris dropped to 3-5. Ricardo Greer paced the winners with 16 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Campbell added 15 points, Romain Duport scored 12 while Alexis Ajinca added 10 for Strasbourg. Justin Dentmon led Zalgiris with 18 points. Arturas Milaknis added 16 and Ksistof Lavrinovic scored 10 for the guests. Dentmon struck twice from downtown in a 0-10 fourth-quarter run that gave Zalgiris a 58-64 run, but Greer and Ajinca put Strasbourg back ahead, 74-72. Dentmon hit an off-balance shot for a 74-76 Zalgiris lead with 2.4 seconds left. However Strasbourg called timeout and Campbell became the hero with a game-winning three-point shot off the glass!
First quarter: Strasbourg overcomes 0-11 start
Paulius Jankunas got Zalgiris going with a quick basket and a three-pointer by Dentmon gave the guests a 0-5 lead. A hook shot by Robertas Javtokas and free throws by Jankunas soon boosted the guests' lead to 0-9. A driving layup by Dentmon capped a 0-11 opening run and forced Strasbourg to call timeout. Ajinca stepped up with a five-meter jumper that a red-hot Dentmon bettered with a big triple. Jeremy Leloup shined with an acrobatic layup and Ajinca buried another jumper to bring the hosts a bit closer, 6-14. Leloup kept pushing Strasbourg with a fast break layup and a free throw by Marty Pocius kept Zalgiris way ahead, 8-15. Axel Toupane dunked and Paul Lacombe added a tip-in to get within 12-15. Lacombe beat the shot-clock buzzer with a rainbow triple and a put-back layup by Greer completed the hosts' comeback, 17-15. Milaknis struck from downtown and a free throw by Greer fixed the score at 18-18 after 10 minutes.
Second quarter: Second unit lifts Zalgiris
Ksistof Lavrinovic nailed a catch-and-shoot jumper early in the second quarter. Duport scored down low and layup-plus-foul by Tadas Klimavicius restored a 20-23 lead. Lacombe scored around the basket, but a three-pointer by Milaknik boosted his team's lead to 22-26. Duport kept trying to change things with a put-back basket, which Lavrinovic matched with free throws. Greer sank a baseline jumper only to see Mindaugas Kupsas step up with a layup. Axel Toupane nailed a six-meter shot that Sarunas Jasikevicius erased with his trademark stop-and-pop jumper. Milaknis buried his third three-pointer to give Zalgiris a 28-35 lead. Campbell took over with a three-pointer. Ajinca and Kupsas traded free throws before Vytenis Lipkevicius gave Zalgiris a 32-38 edge. Dentmon scored off an inbound steal. Leloup hit a triple, but free throws by Pocius gave Zalgiris a 35-42 lead. Duport brought Strasbourg a bit closer, 37-42, at halftime.
Third quarter: Duport puts the hosts ahead
Both teams traded turnovers and missed shots after the break until Ajinca stepped up with a turnaround jumper. Antoine Diot soon added a layup off a steal to bring Strasbourg as close as 41-42. Zalgiris was held scoreless for more than three minutes until Jankunas found space for a layup. Greer swished a turnaround jumper and a layup by Diot put the hosts back ahead, 45-44. Zalgiris kept struggling to find open shots, as Strasbourg was all over the place on defense. The guests brought Dentmon and Milaknis back on court, looking for more fire power. Milaknis buried a corner three-pointer and Duport beat the shot clock with a five-meter jumper that tied it at 47-47. Kupsas quickly answered with a basket in transition, which Diot erased with a backdoor layup. Duport nailed another mid-range shot and matched Kupsas's jump hook with a close basket that gave Strasbourg a 53-51 lead through three quarters.
Fourth quarter: The drama lasts till the final buzzer
Campbell struck from downtown early in the fourth quarter, but Milaknis also hit one from beyond the arc to make it 56-54. A tip-in by Greer soon made it a 4-point game with six minutes left. Milaknis split free throws and a three-pointer by Dentmon tied the game at 58-58. Pocius also buried a triple to put Zalgiris back ahead, 58-61. Strasbourg called timeout, but another three-pointer by Dentmon capped a 0-10 Zalgiris run. Greer rescued the hosts with a layup-plus-foul and Campbell bettered Lavrinovic's jumper with a three-pointer to bring Strasbourg within 64-66 with over three minutes left. Pocius made 2-of-4 free throws, but Greer did better with a four-point play and Campbell followed that with a running triple that ignited the crowd at 71-68. Lavrinovic made free throws, Ajinca scored down low and Jankunas brought Zalgiris within 73-72 with a minute left. Ajinca split free throws and Lavrinovic tied the game, 74-74, with 36 seconds left. Leloup missed a shot and Dentmon stole the show with an off-balance, go-ahead jumper with 2.4 seconds left. Strasbourg called timeout and Campbell banked in the game-winning three at the buzzer!
Thursday, December 5, 2013