2017-18Regular SeasonRound 2
October 20, 2017 CET: 19:00
Local time: 19:00 ALEKSANDAR NIKOLIC HALL

Bjelica, Rochestie help Zvezda hold off Barcelona

Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade used a perfect opening and a strong finish to make for a memorable home opener, holding off FC Barcelona Lassa 90-82 in front of a capacity crowd at the legendary Aleksandar Nikolic Hall on Friday night. Both teams hold 1-1 records in a young Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season after a game which Zvezda opened with 24-11 lead, and repeatedly kept restoring its double-digit lead throughout the night. The margin was 55-41 midway through the third quarter, but Thomas Heurtel fueled Barcelona’s comeback. The visitors erased the deficit in the fourth quarter and went up 79-80 with 2:50 to go. But the hosts finished the game with an 11-2 run to clinch the win. Milko Bjelica led Zvezda with a career-high 23 points, and Taylor Rochestie had 22 points and 7 assists. Big man Mathias Lessort collected 13 points and 9 rebounds, while Pero Antic had 10 points and 9 rebounds in victory. Kevin Seraphin scored 12 of his 16 points in the first half for Barcelona, while Heurtel scored all of his 14 in the final 15 minutes and also dished 11 assists. Ante Tomic had 10 points and 8 rebounds, while Adam Hanga also scored 10 for Barcelona in club's historic 400th EuroLeague game.

Zvezda converted on its first six possessions, with Bjelica hitting a triple to start the game, Rochestie adding a pair of baskets of his own, before Lessort finished a fastbreak with a big dunk that made it 13-7 and delighted the home fans. While Barcelona was looking to find its offensive rhythm, Ognjen Dobric nailed a corner triple and Bjelica’s dunk already helped open a 24-11 lead. Tomic finished the first quarter driving the lane for a dunk and Petteri Koponen hit a three early in the second, but a triple from Antic on the other end, followed by a Rochestie’s floater, restored a 13-point lead, 33-20. Barcelona found its go-to guy in Seraphin, who scored 10 of the next 12 Barcelona points, hitting jumpers and converting inside. The visitors came to within 33-28, but Bjelica got Zvezda going once again before Rochestie hit a pair of triples in the final 90 seconds of the half, giving the hosts 44-32 halftime lead.

In the third quarter, Zvezda continued where it left off. After Adrien Moerman hit a triple and Seraphin scored from close range for Barcelona, James Feldeine had a three-point play and a jumper that helped make it 55-41. That when Heurtel opened his tally, later hitting a triple and a running floater. Pierre Oriola's three-pointer in the final minute of the third quarter cut the difference to 62-57. Back-to-back three-pointers from Dobric restored a double-digit margin, 70-59. But the visitors countered with Hanga's triple and Oriola's three-point play. Tomic scored twice from close range, and Heurtel nailed another three that got the visitors within 77-76. A fastbreak layup from Hanga gave Barcelona its first lead, 79-80. But Bjelica answered on the ensuing possession with a three-pointer and muscled his way for another basket inside, before Rochestie hit a runner that made it 86-82 with 83 seconds to go. The visitors did not score again, and Zvezda celebrated its first win of the season with its fans.

Taylor Rochestie - Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade - EB17
Friday, October 20, 2017
Euroleague.net
Referees: LATISEVS, OLEGS (LAT), PATERNICO, CARMELO (ITA), PASTUSIAK, PIOTR (POL)
Attendance: 6086
By Quarter1234
Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade24201828
FC Barcelona Lassa13192525
End of Quarter1234
Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade24446290
FC Barcelona Lassa13325782
Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 KESELJ, MARKO 6:50   0/1 0/1         1             -1
5 RADICEVIC, NIKOLA 10:56 4 0/2 0/3 4/4       2   1     3 3  
10 LAZIC, BRANKO 25:01     0/2     4 4 2 2       2 2 6
11 LAZAREVIC, STEFAN 0:39                              
12 ANTIC, PERO 17:42 10 1/2 2/4 2/2 2 7 9 1         2 1 16
13 DOBRIC, OGNJEN 18:24 9 0/1 3/6   1 1 2           1 1 7
14 FELDEINE, JAMES 29:15 7 3/5 0/3 1/1   2 2 2 1 1     1 2 7
16 JANKOVIC, STEFAN 10:30 2 1/3 0/3   2   2       2   2 1  
22 ROCHESTIE, TAYLOR 28:55 22 7/11 2/5 2/2   3 3 7       1 1 4 27
26 LESSORT, MATHIAS 22:18 13 6/10   1/1 5 4 9   1 3 2 1 3 2 16
32 JOVANOVIC, NIKOLA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
51 BJELICA, MILKO 29:30 23 6/9 2/4 5/6   3 3 1   1     3 6 23
Team           3   3               3
Totals 200:00 90 24/44 9/31 15/16 13 24 37 16 4 6 4 2 18 22 104
        54.5% 29% 93.8%
Head coach: ALIMPIJEVIC, DUSAN
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
FC Barcelona Lassa
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
1 SERAPHIN, KEVIN 15:00 16 8/9     1 2 3 1   1 1   3 1 17
5 RIBAS, PAU 24:59 4 1/2 0/3 2/2   4 4 3 1 2     1 2 7
8 PRESSEY, PHIL 9:34 3 1/2 0/2 1/2   2 2     1     1 1  
9 HANGA, ADAM 21:32 10 3/4 1/3 1/2   1 1 1   1 1   1 1 8
11 NAVARRO, JUAN CARLOS 7:10 2 1/2 0/1         2             2
13 HEURTEL, THOMAS 27:19 14 3/3 2/3 2/2   4 4 10   4     5 2 20
14 VEZENKOV, SASHA 10:04 4 1/1 0/1 2/2   2 2             1 6
17 KURUCS, RODIONS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
18 ORIOLA, PIERRE 19:23 8 2/5 1/1 1/1   1 1 1 1 1   1 5 3 4
25 KOPONEN, PETTERI 22:30 5 0/3 1/2 2/2   4 4 1       1   2 7
44 TOMIC, ANTE 21:53 10 4/9   2/2 1 7 8 2   1   2 4 5 13
45 MOERMAN, ADRIEN 20:36 6   2/3   1 1 2 1 1 1     2   6
Team           3 2 5     1         4
Totals 200:00 82 24/40 7/19 13/15 6 30 36 22 3 13 2 4 22 18 94
        60% 36.8% 86.7%
Head coach: ALONSO, SITO

Head Coaches

ALIMPIJEVIC, DUSAN
Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade
“We had an excellent first half, we were concentrated on small details, like boxing out. We had more rebounds than Barcelona, and that is a huge thing for us at this moment. Big thanks to our fans, they showed once again that with them anything is possible. It is hard to play for any opponent that comes to this arena. We already reacted well the morning after our first loss. These players leave their egos at home, and play for the team. It is a team win, a team that grew up in a matter of days. We have a lot of room for improvement. We will get better through these games, improve through these games. The crowd recognized that, too, supporting us when it got tough. Also, this team does not panic.”
ALONSO, SITO
FC Barcelona Lassa
“It has been a good test for us in this environment. In the beginning, we started doing things not in a good way. We did sometimes very good things, got open shots, but when we were losing by 5 or 7 points, the atmosphere in our team was like we were losing by 12 or 14 points and have only 5 or 6 minutes to overcome the deficit. We played in a hurry, and did not look for good options on offense. And here, when you make two or three mistakes in a row, Zvezda plays comfortable on offense and takes advantage of it. In the first 20 minutes, Zvezda got every loose ball, every offensive rebound, and they beat us in the first 20 minutes. Coming out of the locker room, things started changing. We started getting more offensive rebounds. We had our opportunity, we took a one-point lead but Bjelica made an important three-point shot, after that Rochestie made an important two-point shot. We played bad in the last minute. We have to learn and be ready for the next game.”

Players

ROCHESTIE, TAYLOR
Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade
“We feel great. It is a good start to our home games. Our crowd was everything tonight. We felt the energy from the beginning, we are very excited to play at home, and we kind of established ourselves on our home court. It’s just a beginning, there are a lot of games to play. We got to get focused on the next one. Tonight, it was all my team and this crowd. I am just happy to go out and put on a good show for these fans, and play hard for my team.”
ORIOLA, PIERRE
FC Barcelona Lassa
"We had a bad first half and carried that throughout the entire game. They had a stronger start, not giving up any loose ball as lost, and we trailed all the way in the first half, making a lot of mistakes that they punished us for. We played much better in the second half, with much more intensity. We managed to take the lead after trailing for many minutes, but in the end we made some mistakes and they scored some good baskets that allowed them to win the game. We cannot allow so many early mistakes, especially on the road, in such a tough arena as this. This is just our second EuroLeague game, the first one on the road, and we still have a lot of things to improve. The way we played in the second half is the road we want to go through."
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