2003-04Regular SeasonRound 8
January 08, 2004 CET: 21:10
Local time: 21:10 PALACIO DE LOS DEPORTES J.M. MARTIN CARPENA
Thanks to a hard-working, aggressive defense, Unicaja scored its biggest Group B victory of the year, upsetting Maccabi Tel Aviv, 87-75 in Malaga, Spain, on Thursday. The hosts used a 16-0 run late in the final period to complete the come-from-behind win. Unicaja improves to 2-6 and sent a message about its Top 16 hopes. Meanwhile, Maccabi, at 6-2, stays on top of Group B along with CSKA, who lost in Siena against Montepaschi. Louis Bullock led the winners with 23 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists. Walter Herrmann posted a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Moustapha Sonko had 15 points and 5 assists and Berni Rodriguez chipped in 12 on 4 of 7 three-pointers. Deon Thomas had 15 points off the bench for Maccabi, while Nikola Vujcic had 14 points and 8 rebounds and Sarunas Jasikevicius had 13 points for the guests. Proof of Unicaja's hustle was that the hosts outrebounded Maccabi by 43-27.

In the opening quarter, Maccabi's Anthony Parker and Jasikevicius gave the guests a 0-4 lead, but Unicaja's man-to-man defense was really physical and managed to slow Maccabi, and Herrmann ignited a 8-1 run that gave the hosts a three-point lead, 8-5. But Jasikevicius answered with a three-pointer and moments later added a mid-range jumper that made the score 8-12. Sonko, with a layup in penetration, and Baston, powerful with a dunk, exchanged baskets, but soon Unicaja took over. A basket by Larry Lewis, a fast break layup by Phillip and a four-point play by Bullock sparked a 15-4 run. After a Rodriguez triple and a dunk by Herrmann, Unicaja was quickly ahead by 9, 25-16. Maccabi recovered with a 0-5 run in the final minute of the quarter, which made it a four-point game, 25-21, after the first period.

Unicaja was on fire early in the second quarter, as it used a 13-4 opening run to open up a 38-25 advantage. Maccabi looked inside and Thomas, a former Unicaja player, stepped up and scored 11 points in just 3 minutes, while Vujcic added a layup to cut the hosts' lead to 5, 41-36. midway through this period. Unicaja got a break when Anthony Parker picked up his third foul, which limited Maccabi's offensive options. Meanwhile, Herrmann and Bullock combined for 7 points to help Unicaja keep its lead, 48-41. Bullock's 16 points in the first half were key for Unicaja, but Maccabi knotted the score at 49-49 at halftime thanks to 5 straight points form Tal Burstein plus baskets from Gur Shelef and Vujacic close to the buzzer.

As opposed to the first two quarters, the third quarter turned out to be a defensive battle. The pace was fast, but both teams struggled to score, as the only points through the first 4 minutes came on a three-pointer by Rodriguez and 2 free throws by Vujcic. Maccabi regained the lead, 53-56, after a driving basket by Jasikevicius and a wild one-handed dunk by Baston. Unicaja stayed aggressive in both ends of the court, but went scoreless for nearly 5 minutes. Another dunk by Baston on a no-look pass by Jasikevicius was followed by a put-back layup by Herrmann. The hosts used this basket as a wake-up call, but even when Carlos Cabezas drilled one from downtown and Herrmann added 2 foul shots, Maccabi stayed focused a kept a three-point lead, 59-62, entering the fourth.

Both defenses were aggressive and neither club scored fluently early in the fourth. Burstein, once again, broke Unicaja's 2-3 zone defense with a three-point shot from the left corner but Maccabi went scoreless for 2 minutes, while a free throw by German Gabriel and a layup by Herrmann brough Unicaja within 3, 62-65. Vujcic stepped up and added a three-point play on a two-handed slam. Herrmann drilled a three in the other end, but Derrick Sharp, used to taking and making big shots, answered from downtown, and Maccabi kept a six-point lead, 65-71, midway through the final quarter. Bullock finally showed up to drill a three-meter jumper, his first points in the second half. Soon after that, Unicaja managed to turn things around, as they went on a game-breaking 16-0 run. Unicaja's defense excelled, as Maccabi could not find any answers. Meanwhile, Sonko caught fire, scoring 9 points, while Bullock added a three-pointer and another fast break basket to extend the local lead to 83-73, with less than 2 minutes to go. Unicaja earned its second win this season and its fans celebrated a unexpected yet well-deserved victory.
Thursday, January 8, 2004
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Referees: REMS, IZTOK (SLO), RADONJIC, GORAN (FRA), RYZHYK, BORYS (UKR), ESCOBAR, LORENZO (ESP)
Attendance: 7850
By Quarter1234
Unicaja25241028
Maccabi Elite21281313
End of Quarter1234
Unicaja25495987
Maccabi Elite21496275
Unicaja
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 BALTANAS, MARCOS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
5 RODRIGUEZ, BERNI 20:45 12 0/2 4/7   1 3 4 2   1     4 1 9
7 PHILLIP, DARREN 25:15 5 2/2   1/2 2   2     1     1 2 6
10 CABEZAS, CARLOS 9:00 3   1/1 0/2       1   1     2 1  
11 BULLOCK, LOUIS 28:00 23 3/7 4/8 5/5 3 5 8 3 1 3     2 5 27
12 CORBACHO, ALBERTO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
13 GABRIEL, GERMAN 17:00 4   1/2 1/2 1 2 3 1 1 2     4 1 2
14 SONKO, MOUSTAPHA 29:00 15 7/13 0/1 1/1 2 1 3 5 4 3     3 6 20
22 LEWIS, LARRY 31:00 7 2/9 0/2 3/4 3 7 10 3 3   2   2 4 17
23 HERRMANN, WALTER 33:15 18 5/12 1/4 5/6 3 8 11         3 2 6 19
40 KORNEGAY, CHARLES 6:45   0/2     1 1 2     1     4   -5
Team           4 1 5               5
Totals 200:00 87 19/47 11/25 16/22 20 28 48 15 9 12 2 3 24 26 100
        40.4% 44% 72.7%
Head coach: SCARIOLO, SERGIO
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
Maccabi Elite
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
4 BEN CHIMOL, AVRAHAM DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
5 BASTON, MACEO 26:45 9 4/8   1/2 1 13 14     2 2   2 1 17
6 SHARP, DERRICK 19:00 9   3/5         2         3   6
7 VUJCIC, NIKOLA 36:00 14 5/7   4/6 4 4 8 3   4     2 7 22
8 PARKER, ANTHONY 23:00 2 1/4 0/3     1 1 3 1 2 1   4 1 -3
9 SHELEF, GUR 10:45 3 1/2   1/2   2 2 1         4 2 2
10 BURSTEIN, TAL 26:30 8 1/4 2/6         1 1 3     3 1 -2
11 HALPERIN, YOTAM 2:15   0/1                         -1
13 JASIKEVICIUS, SARUNAS 32:45 13 2/3 1/5 6/8       3 2 2     3 7 13
14 KAZARNOVSKI, ANTON DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
15 THOMAS, DEON 16:00 15 5/7   5/7 1 1 2 1   1   2 3 5 13
33 BLU, DAVID 7:00 2 1/1 0/1                   2   -1
Team             3 3   1           4
Totals 200:00 75 20/37 6/20 17/25 6 24 30 14 5 14 3 2 26 24 70
        54.1% 30% 68%
Head coach: GERSHON, PINI
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