Laboral Kutxa crushes Limoges and gets help to reach Top 16
Laboral Kutxa Vitoria Gasteiz torpedoed Limoges CSP 92-56 on Thursday night at Fernando Buesa Arena, but it wasn’t until later in the locker room that Coach Velimir Perasovic’s squad could celebrate a berth in the Top 16. That only came after Olympiacos Piraeus defeated EA7 Emporio Armani Milan, which ensured that Laboral’s 5-3 record would be enough to play in the next stage. Laboral never trailed in completing a season sweep of the French champs, who dropped to 2-6. The lead reached double figures in the first quarter, was 25 at halftime and touched 40 in the fourth as all but one player scored for the hosts. Darius Adams led them all with 23 points on 5-of-9 three-point shooting plus 5 steals. Toko Shengelia scored 11 and Ioannis Bourousis posted 10 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists for Laboral. Leo Westermann paced Limoges with 14 points and Matt Gatens added 9.
First quarter: Adams, Hanga take control early
The hosts won the opening tip and Adam Hanga dumped a pass to Darko Planinic for the game’s first basket. Mark Payne got Limoges going with a basket-plus-foul. Kim Tillie hit a jumper and Adams took a steal in for a layup to put the hosts in charge. Adams picked Westermann’s pocket and after an offensive rebound made it 9-2 with a triple. Yakhouba Diawara responded with Limoges’s first triple. Showtime came early with an Adams-to-Hanga alley-oop slam. After Westermann’s first basket, Tillie scored again, Fabien Causuer drove baseline for a reverse layup and Hanga’s pass carved up the Limoges defense and resulted in a three-point play for Planinic and an 18-7 lead. Hanga intercepted Heika Schaffartzik’s long pass and attack the rim for a wicked dunk. Nobel Boungou-Colo ended the Limoges drough when he set up Frejus Zerbo for a slam, but seconds later Adams connected on his second triple to make it 23-9. Hanga split free throws to stretch the lead to 15. Westermann hit a pull-up jumper and Ali Traore made a reverse layup. Bourousis got going with a bucket inside. After Traore’s next basket, Bourousis’s three-pointer on the first-quarter buzzer made it 29-15.
Second quarter: Shengelia makes his mark
Shengelia came in and soon made an impact with a free throw, but Gatens nailed a triple for the visitors. After Bourousis and Ousmane Camara traded baskets in the paint, Bourousis turned provider as he whipped a pass to Shengelia for a reverse lay-in. Gatens countered with a jumper, but Bourousis’s perfect bounce pass found a cutting Corbacho for a layup. Camara tried to close the gap with a tip-in. After Bourousis split free throws, Westermann started to heat up; he went through the Laboral defense for a finger roll layup and soon after shook off a defender, spun and hit a jump shot. Corbacho kept Laboral in control as he drilled a three from the corner. Shengelia added to the lead from the line. A great Westermann pass set up a Camara slam, but in the closing seconds, Shengelia came up with a steal and sent a lob pass to Adams, who scored, turned around and took the ball away from Westermann and scored again to end the half at 54-29.
Third quarter: Adams pours it on for the hosts
Adams stayed hot into the second half with a deep three. Westermann kept playing hard for Limoges and scored next. Tillie scored on the break and Diawara netted a baseline jumper at the other end. Westermann netted a pull-up jumper and Schaffartzik ran the pick-and-roll with Traore for a layup that made it 59-37. Adams netted a pull-up triple in transition and then took a great dish from Bourousis for a layup. Diaware drilled a three for Limoges, but Adams netted his fifth triple as the hosts continued to cruise. Causeur drove for a layup and Hanga finished with a circus shot on the break as the difference hit the 30s: 71-40. After Payne split free throws, Shengelia banked in a nifty shot. Shengelia rejected Payne in the closing seconds, but Zerbo scored to make it 73-43.
Fourth quarter: Laboral puts it away early
Shengelia used a spin move inside and then a steal and slam to further extend the lead. Westermann scored inside, but Mike James drilled a three for an 80-45 advantage. Gatens netted free throws for the visitors and then followed it with a three-pointer. Jaka Blazic and James sank free throws and Corbacho nailed a three. Ilimane Diop’s first points capped an 11-0 run. Gattens and Mathieu Wojciechowski sank free throws. Wojciechowski added a fast break dunk that ended the scoring at 92-56.
Thursday, December 3, 2015