Last 16 Round 1 - January 26, 2010 CET: 20:45 Local time: 20:45 - PALAVERDE

Records

Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final 0-0
0-0 Quarter Final 0-0
0-0 Last 16 0-0
4-2 Regular Season 6-0
4-2 Overall 6-0

Referees

Crew Chief
MUHVIC, DUBRAVKO, Croatia
Referee
CMIKIEWICZ, MAREK, Poland
Umpire
KRAUSE, OLIVER, Germany

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
82.3 Points 85.0
33.2 Rebounds 31.0
9.7 O. Rebounds 9.2
23.5 D. Rebounds 21.8
14.0 Assists 16.2
9.8 Steals 8.2
2.0 Blocks 1.7
13.5 Turnovers 15.0
49.4 % 2PT 61.0 %
41.1 % 3PT 39.1 %
69.3 % FT 76.9 %
85.2 Index 98.3

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
20.8 / NEAL, GARY Points 14.8 / Banic
7.7 / Wallace Rebounds 4.8 / Markota
2.8 / Wallace OR 1.7 / Markota
5.0 / NEAL, GARY DR 3.2 / Markota
4.2 / Kus Assists 2.6 / Blums
2.5 / NEAL, GARY Steals 1.3 / Markota
1.0 / NICEVIC, SANDRO Blocks 0.5 / Markota
2.2 / NEAL, GARY Turnovers 2.5 / Markota
58.1 % / Wallace 2PT 85.0 % / Markota
100.0 % / SANDRI, DANIELE 3PT 77.8 % / VAZQUEZ, PACO
100.0 % / HUKIC, JASMIN FT 100.0 % / Banic
20.8 / NEAL, GARY Index 15.8 / Banic

THE TAKE

Two of the teams that reached the Eurocup Quarterfinals last season will fight each other in the Last 16 when Benetton Gioco Digitale hosts Bizkaia Bilbao Basket in Group K on Tuesday night. Benetton, a two-time Saporta Cup winner, was second in regular season Group F. Bilbao, the only one of last year's semifinalist left in the competition, is the only unbeaten team left in the 2009-10 Eurocup. Bilbao recently improved its frontcourt by inking Axel Hervelle, who offers intensity, experience and shooting range at power forward. He is set to play alongside All-Eurocup big man Marko Banic, who has been unstoppable so far this season. Salva Guardia offers intensity and aggressiveness off the bench, but coach Fotis Katsikaris can opt to open the floor with Damir Markota at power forward due to his shooting range and quickness. Banic is ready for a key matchup against Sandro Nicevic, who knows him very well due to their time together in the Croatian national team. Guardia and Hervelle will have to box out against two very good rebounders in CJ Wallace and Donatas Motiejunas. Benetton is set to run its offense through scoring ace Gary Neal and recently signed bomber KC Rivers. Jasmin Hukic is back to offer experience, deep range and versatility at both forwards, with Tyrone Grant offering a helping hand. Expect Neal and Rivers to benefit from new head coach Jasmin Repesa's trademark up-tempo game. Rivers has a tough matchup against Alex Mumbru, as he can take him to the low post, hit from downtown or try to take him one-on-one due to his driving skills. Neal will not have it easy against two very intense defenders in Robert Conley and Chris Warren. The point guard battle will be interesting, too. Davor Kus is set to see most minutes at playmaker, with Daniel Hackett offering size and determination off the bench. Kus will face a battery of point guards featuring pass-first playmaker Javi Rodriguez, clutch hero Javi Salgado and combo guards Ronnie Seibutis and Janis Blums. Bilbao must get Banic and Mumbru involved, as well as playing up-tempo to get its many shooters involved. Benetton must power the boards and run its offense through Neal. Both teams have brand new coaches, so the game is totally unpredictable, except to say that there is talent and tradition, which point to an exciting showdown in Treviso, Italy.

REFEREES: Dubravko Muhvic, Marek Cmikiewicz, Oliver Krause
Monday, January 25, 2010
Eurocupbasketball.com

Quotes Head Coaches

KATSIKARIS, FOTIOS
Bizkaia Bilbao B
"We start the Last 16 against a rival with lots of history in European basketball, and which has undergone several changes lately. It will be a hard court for us, you have to play really well to win in Treviso. They have recently changed their head coach, Jasmin Repesa, who has a lot of experience and who has Croatian players like Davor Kus and Sandro Nicevic as the referents. The backcourt of Benetton is really dangerous. They have good shooters and we will have to work well on the screens to not allow them to shoot open shots. With scorers like Gary Neal or Jasmin Hukic can deliver a great deal of damage to us. Our defense will have to work at its maximum to try to stop Benetton in Treviso. I think that more than physyical tiredness, my players can have some mental fatigue. I hope we can overcome that obstacle and I hope to give some minutes to most of my players. Everybody will get a chance."

Players

Janis Blums - Bizkaia Bilbao BasketThe only undefeated team from the Eurocup regular season stayed that way as Bilbao Biskaia topped host Benetton Basket 69-76 to open Group K of the Last 16 for both teams on Tuesday. Bilbao and Panellinios are now tied at 1-0 atop the group, while Benetton joins Brose Baskets at 0-1. Several minutes of shutout defense after Benetton had taken its only lead after halftime proved the difference for Bilbao. So did 15 points in the second quarter alone for Janis Blums, who made 4 three-pointers in 7 minutes and finished with a game-high 22 points. Marco Banic followed with 13 points and 7 rebounds for the winners. Javi Salgado added 11 points, including 5 in a key late run to save the victory, as did newcomer Axel Hervelle. Benetton got 18 points from Gary Neal. Donatas Motiejunas pleased the home crowd with 17 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals and 3 assists while Jasmin Hukic scored 13.

It was a toe-to-toe battle from the very start as Javi Rodriguez for Bilbao and Hukic for Benetton opened the game with three-point bombs. There were three more ties in the next minutes before Bilbao seemed to surge on layups by Chris Warren and Marko Banic at 9-12. A lead change was coming, however, as Motiejunas, Gary Neal and Hukic combined for the games next 7 points, while C.J. Wallace and Davor Kus added 2 free throws each to push Benetton in front 20-14 after 10 minutes. Bilbao followed Blums and Moiso to a second-quarter revival. That duo owned the floor with the first 8 points, including a triple by Blums, as Bilbao tied 22-22. Javi Salgado joined in with a pair of baskets around another three-pointer by Blums, who finished out the quarter completely on fire. Blums launched and hit 2 more shots from long-distance, including one on the buzzer, to give him 15 points in 10 minutes and Bilbao a 35-42 lead at the break.

Blums opened the second half with free throws before Daniel Hackett, Motiejunas and Neal mounted Benetton's response, an 11-2 run to tie it all up again, 46-46. After Banic and Motiejunas exchanged baskets, Jasmin fired Benetton back in from from downtown, 51-48. Banic took over, however, with the game's next 6 points as the Bilbao defense blanked the hosts for more than 3 minutes to lead 51-54 after three quarters. Bilbao extended its advantage on a three-point shot by Hervelle to open the final quarter, but Kelvin Rivers immediately did the same for Benetton. Hervelle and Motiejunas kept the scoreboard close at 58-61, before Alex Mumbru tried to let Bilbao escape with a big triple. Neal and Hukic reeled the guests back in, however, cutting the difference to 62-64 headed into the game's last 2 minutes. That's when Salgado reappeared, drilling a three-pointer and free throws in a 1-7 run that proved the difference in sending Bilbao home as a road winner to open Group K.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Eurocupbasketball.com
Referees: MUHVIC, DUBRAVKO (CRO), CMIKIEWICZ, MAREK (POL), KRAUSE, OLIVER (GER)
Attendance: 2548
By Quarter1234
Benetton Basket20151618
Bizkaia Bilbao B14281222
End of Quarter1234
Benetton Basket20355169
Bizkaia Bilbao B14425476
Head coach: REPESA, JASMIN
Benetton Basket
# Player Min Pts 2FG
M-A
3FG
M-A
FT
M-A
Rebounds As St To Bl Fouls PIR
O D T Fv Ag Cm Rv
4 DE NICOLAO, ANDREA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
5 KUS, DAVOR 28:03 2 0/2 0/1 2/2   2 2   1 1     3 3 1
6 GRANT, TYRONE DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
7 HUKIC, JASMIN 25:25 13 2/2 3/5     5 5 1         1   16
9 RIVERS, KELVIN 25:32 7 2/2 1/2     1 1 1   2     2 1 5
10 NICEVIC, SANDRO 16:48 5 2/5   1/2   5 5   1 3     4 1 1
11 MOTIEJUNAS, DONATAS 31:09 17 7/9   3/4 3 2 5 3 4     1 1 7 31
12 SANDRI, DANIELE 0:04                              
13 HACKETT, DANIEL 17:30 3 0/1 1/1         3         2 1 4
14 NEAL, GARY 30:46 18 5/9 1/7 5/6   2 2 1 1       5 6 12
18 WALLACE, C.J. 24:43 4 1/4   2/2       4 1 2     3 2 3
Team                     1         -1
Totals 200:00 69 19/34 6/16 13/16 3 17 20 13 8 9 0 1 21 21 72
55.9% 37.5% 81.3%
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
Head coach: KATSIKARIS, FOTIOS
Bizkaia Bilbao B
# Player Min Pts 2FG
M-A
3FG
M-A
FT
M-A
Rebounds As St To Bl Fouls PIR
O D T Fv Ag Cm Rv
4 WARREN, CHRIS 22:54 2 1/2 0/2   3   3   2 3     2 1  
5 MOISO, JEROME 23:37 9 4/7   1/2 1 2 3     1 1   3 3 8
6 RODRIGUEZ, JAVI 13:11 3   1/2   1   1 1   3     3   -2
8 GUARDIA, SALVA DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 VAZQUEZ, PACO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
10 SEIBUTIS, RENALDAS 6:49           1 1   1       2    
11 MARKOTA, DAMIR 1:52                              
13 BANIC, MARKO 19:45 13 4/5   5/6 1 6 7     1     3 3 17
14 SALGADO, JAVI 26:58 11 2/2 1/1 4/4   1 1 3 1 2     3 6 17
15 MUMBRU, ALEX 26:07 5 1/3 1/4   1 5 6 2   1     3 3 7
17 HERVELLE, AXEL 33:53 11 4/4 1/6     2 2 2 2 1     1   10
45 BLUMS, JANIS 24:54 22 2/3 4/9 6/8 1 3 4 2         1 5 24
Team                                
Totals 200:00 76 18/26 8/24 16/20 8 20 28 10 6 12 1 0 21 21 81
69.2% 33.3% 80%
This game is not yet played

Head Coaches

REPESA, JASMIN
Benetton Basket
"I'm really sorry about this loss: it was the first one at home and it was important for the group. We should have taken advantage of playing on our home court. Nonetheless, Bilbao is a very good team. We are in a difficult situation, everybody has to regain confidence. As I said to my players, if we think of the difficulty as a challenge to face, we will act like men. We all have to pull together, not only the players, but also the staff and fans."
KATSIKARIS, FOTIOS
Bizkaia Bilbao B
"It's a great win for many reasons: to keep the same dynamic as in the first phase, because we beat a strong team with an impressive background, and because this will help us find our identity. We will need patience, but I inherited a very good group. It will be a big challenge. We will need to define the role of each player, to clarify the point-guard situation and get Moiso at his real level. He’s a player whocan really do great things."

Players

HUKIC, JASMIN
Benetton Basket
"It's a very bad start. Having said that, we knew Bilbao was a very good team. Now, we will have to get some points away from home, although this will not be easy at all. The two other teams are very tough, too."
MOISO, JEROME
Bizkaia Bilbao B
"This is a big victory for us. This will put us on the right track and it’s not easy because we have a new coach and a new system to get used to. It's not important which team we will be facing, what matters is to stay on the right track, be that in the ACB or in the Eurocup."
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