Top 16 Round 5 - March 15, 2007 CET: 20:45 Local time: 20:45 - PALALOTTOMATICA

Records

Ave.   Ave.
0-0 Final Four 0-0
0-0 Playoffs 0-0
0-0 Top 16 0-0
0-0 Regular Season 0-1
7-11 Overall 16-2

Referees

Crew Chief
ZAVLANOS, NIKOLAOS, Greece
Referee
ANKARALI, RECEP, Turkey
Umpire
CHAMBON, DAVID, France

Team Stats

Ave.   Ave.
72.2 Points 85.3
33.9 Rebounds 32.3
12.7 O. Rebounds 10.9
21.2 D. Rebounds 21.4
10.4 Assists 17.1
15.9 Steals 13.0
2.4 Blocks 2.0
13.1 Turnovers 12.2
45.9 % 2PT 54.4 %
29.9 % 3PT 39.0 %
72.7 % FT 68.3 %
73.3 Index 97.6

Player Stats

Ave.   Ave.
13.4 / BODIROGA, DEJAN Points 16.7 / SCOLA, LUIS
4.8 / GARRI, LUCA Rebounds 5.5 / SCOLA, LUIS
2.1 / GARRI, LUCA OR 2.2 / SPLITTER, TIAGO
3.2 / BODIROGA, DEJAN DR 4.2 / SCOLA, LUIS
2.5 / BODIROGA, DEJAN Assists 5.3 / PRIGIONI, PABLO
2.4 / Hawkins Steals 2.6 / PRIGIONI, PABLO
0.7 / ASKRABIC, O. Blocks 0.5 / Peker
2.1 / Hawkins Turnovers 2.1 / Rakocevic
50.7 % / BODIROGA, DEJAN 2PT 83.3 % / PRIGIONI, PABLO
40.5 % / BODIROGA, DEJAN 3PT 47.1 % / Erdogan
88.9 % / Giachetti FT 90.5 % / PRIGIONI, PABLO
14.6 / BODIROGA, DEJAN Index 19.2 / SCOLA, LUIS

THE TAKE

Lottomatica Roma hosts Tau Ceramica in what is a must-win Group D game for the hosts on Thursday in the Italian capital. While Tau (4-0) has already locked up first place in Group D and with it homecourt advantage in the Quarterfinal Playoffs, Roma (1-3) could face elimination if it loses and Maccabi Elite beats Pau-Orthez in Thursday's other game in this group. The game marks the return of new Tau coach Bozidar Maljkovic to the sidelines. Maljkovic wasn't there two weeks ago, when Tau whipped Roma 99-56 in a record-setting performance as Serkan Erdogan led five of his teammates in double figures with 24 points. With Roma (1-3) bent on revenge and survival, Maljkovic will debut without the luxury of having the team's leading scorers in the Top 16: Erdogan, who has a sprained ankle, and all-Euroleague power forward Luis Scola are taking the game off to rest. Roma has a big man missing, too, has Roberto Chiacig is out with injury a week after playing his best game with his new team. Despite Chiacib's double-double, Roma lost its third straight game last week at Pau-Orthez and will need to regroup quickly to save its season. Head coach Jasmin Repesa's squad has some experience with late comebacks, however, as they waited until the closing minutes of the regular season to secure a Top 16 berth. Tau remained red-hot last week with a convincing 94-73 win over Maccabi. The team's depth has helped it prevail through a recent stretch of injuries and coaching switches, with Zoran Planinic (9.9 ppg., 4.3 apg.) returning to game form last week and Igor Rakocevic (16.7 ppg.) available this week. Without Scola and Erdogan, Tau will look to others to score, like center Tiago Splitter (10.1 ppg., 5.6 rpg.) and swingman Fred House (7.4 ppg.), who have both raised their averages in the Top 16, while reserve guard Ender Arslan (8.3 ppg.) has blended in well with the team. Roma's backourt of Mire Chatman (11.4 ppg., 2.6 spg.) and David Hawkins (13.6 ppg., 2.4 spg.), with Alex Righetti (8.3 ppg.) and Jon Stefansson (7.3 ppg.) off the bench, will need to play prefect on both sides of the floor against Tau's guard rotation, which includes Pablo Prigioni (6.9 ppg., 5.3 apg., 2.6 spg.), Arslan, House and Planinic (9.9 ppg., 4.3 apg.). In the paint Roma turns to Ognjen Askrabic (7.2 ppg., 5.4 rpg.) and Luca Garri, among others, to stop Tau's trio of Splitter, Kaya Peker and Mirza Teletovic. Much of Roma's offense will go through veteran forward Dejan Bodiroga (13.4 ppg.), who seems to have a knack to step up in these games. Bodiroga, who has scored in double figures in each game that he has started this season, is likely Roma's best bet to effectively score and to establish a rhythm. If Bodiroga is on form as he has been in most big games during his career, Roma will have a chance to put an end to Tau's six-game winning streak.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Euroleague.net - Cindy Garcia, Rome

Quotes Head Coaches

REPESA, JASMIN
Lottomatica Roma
"We have a duty towards our fans and towards ourselves to show the real value of Roma, which we didn't see in Vitoria. We will try to win on Thursday but it is going to be difficult. Tau has lost only two encounters in the Euroleague this season and they are a very good side.They have had a coaching change and we will see what happens. Bozidar Maljkovic has a lot of experience but he hasn't had much time to coach the team. I will have all my players available with the exception of Roberto Chiacig, who got injured in the last Euroleague game agianst Pau-Orthez, and hasn't recovered."
MALJKOVIC, BOZIDAR
Tau Ceramica
"For this game, we won’t have Serkan Erdogan, with a sprained ankle, and Luis Scola, which is a decision I made. After talking to the doctor and my assistants, I think that it is better that he does not travel. We have played 44 games so far and there was no practice or game in which the full roster was available. I want to recover all my players for the important moments of the season. However, Igor Rakocevic will travel because he has practiced well. It will also be a good chance to see players like Mirza Teletovic in action, as they have played little lately. Just the same, the absences do not pardon us from trying to win in Rome. Lottomatica will be hungry for a win since we destroyed them in Vitoria."

Players

STEFANSSON, JON
Lottomatica Roma
"We want to prove to ourselves that there isn't a 43 point-difference between Roma and Tau Ceramica. We were embarrased after our performance against Tau in Vitoria but I believe we have learned from our mistakes. We came out too flat in that game. They played aggressive and we simply didn't react: we had no answers. For sure, when Tau comes to town for a Euroleague Top 16 game, you always find movitation. We are really excited for Thursday's game and we know we have to be very aggressive from the start if we wish to upset Tau."
TELETOVIC, MIRZA
Tau Ceramica
"We have to show everyone that we can win on the road and that we are not just a strong team at home. We already managed to get road wins this season against teams like Unicaja or Maccabi. Coach Bozidar Maljkovic already said that our playing style would not change much, but that there are going to be details that will be different. That forces you to work harder and I think that being already qualified for the quarterfinals gives us an advantage, as well as time to practice those details."
Igor Rakocevic - Tau Ceramica Tau Cermaica continued its winning ways on Thursday with a 72-77 victory at Lottomatica Roma in head coach Bozidar Maljkovic's first game back in the Euroleague. Tau remained perfect in the Top 16 and won its seventh straight game overall in the Euroleague, despite the fact that top scorers Luis Scola and Serkan Erdogan remained home with injuries. Meanwhile, Roma dropped to 1-4 and saw its last chance to qualify for the Quarterfinal Playoffs slip away. The hosts opened strong and led for much of the first half, which ended with the score tied at 40-40. However Tau went on top for good late in the third and held on throughout the last 10 minutes for the win. Tiago Splitter had a big night for Tau with 18 points, 9 rebounds and 10 fouls drawn. Mirza Teletovic and Igor Rakocevic added 17 each and Sergi Vidal 10 for the winners. Ognjen Askrabic recorded 19 points and 7 rebounds for Roma, Dejan Bodiroga was good for 17 and David Hawkins for 14 in defeat.

Splitter's layup accounted for the game's first points, but Roma quickly found its stride with Hawkins's three and a tap-in by Askrabic putting the hosts up 5-2. Hawkins added two free throws, but Teletovic dunked after a pass from Pablo Prigioni. Baskets by Askrabic, Bodiroga and Askrabic again helped the Romans build a 13-6 lead midway through the first period. Another Hawkins's three and a Bodiroga basket stretched the lead to 10 with 3 minutes to play into the first quarter. Alessandro Tonolli's three-pointer from the top of the key left Roma in command at 20-11. A Prigioni shot from downtown, a three-point play by Splitter and another three from Rakocevic helped Tau battle back to trail 24-19 at the end of the opening quarter.

Ognjen Askrabic - Lottomatica RomaAskrabic buried consecutive threes to start the second quarter as Roma built a 31-20 advantage before Tau started to come back. A Prigioni three from the left and two Mirza Teletovic free throws left Roma ahead 31-25. Alex Righetti and Teletovic then traded baskets before Rakocevic sank two free throws. Ender Arslan's fast break layup saw Tau cut the deficit to 33-31. Luca Garri made a strong move and went past Splitter to score, but the Brazilian caught a pass from Rakocevic and dunked with one hand to get Tau within 2. Bodiroga's jump shot was followed by a Rakocevic three and Arslan's layup as Tau took the lead for the first time at 38-37.Hawkins's layup put Roma back in front, but Teletovic's free throws restored the visitors narrow advantage. An unsportsmanlike foul was called on Arslan after he hit Mire Chatman on the arm and the Roma point guard made a free throw as the teams went to the locker rooms tied 40-40 at halftime.

Vidal's layup gave Tau a lead at the start of the third quarter. Garri buried his first three of the game and Chatman's jump shot made it 45-42 for Roma. Splitter split free throws before Garri scored in transition to make it 47-43. Splitter was then fouled and missed two at the line, and Roma took advantage with Bodiroga's 4 consecutive points giving Roma a 51-45 lead midway through the period. Askrabic's rushed three rimmed out and Teletovic's slam reduced the deficit to 51-49. A Garri foul sent Splitter to the line, but again he struggled and made only 1-of-2. It did not prevent him from asking for the ball though, and Splitter again went to the line and this time converted both attempted free throws as Tau led 52-51 with 2 minutes left in the third quarter. Bodiroga and Rakocevic traded baskets before coach Jasmin Repesa called for a timeout. Splitter returned to the line and sank 1-of-2 to make it 55-53. After Jon Stefansson's attempted three-pointer rimmed out, Rakocevic buried a three to give Tau a 58-53 advantage at the end of the third quarter.

Kaya Peker - Tau CeramicaRakocevic made his second straight three at the start of the fourth and Kaya Peker added two from the line to make it a 10-point advantage. Bodiroga replied with a three, and when Rakocevic was called for an unsportsmanlike foul on Jacopo Giachetti, the Italian went to the line. But Giachetti only split the free throws before Peker's block denied Stefansson's layup. Stefansson did earn a trip to the line and made 1-of-2, but Vidal sank an open three for a 66-58 lead. Righetti's three rimmed out and Teletovic's layup restored Tau's 10-point lead with 5 minutes left to play. Askrabic and Prigioni traded baskets before Repesa called for a timeout. Teletovic fouled Askrabic when he was attempting a three-pointer and he then made 2-of-3 to reduce the deficit to 8. Tau turned the ball over and Hawkins's layup made it 70-64. Teletovic buried two from the charity stripe, but Askrabic, who was having a fine game, replied down low. Prigioni turned the ball over, but Askrabic's shot three rimmed out. Bodiroga put Planinic on the line and he split two free throws to put his team ahead 73-66 with less than 2 minutes remaining. Zoran Planinic added 1 point from the line before Bodiroga's layup cut the deficit to 74-68. Planinic added another point before Askrabic's layup made it 75-70. Splitter again made 1-of-2 at the charity stripe and both Stefansson and Hawkins missed shots from long range. Rakocevic made 1-of-2 from the line to extend Tau's lead to 7 points with 35 seconds on the clock. Hawkins's layup made it 77-72, and that's how it finished as Roma's hopes of progressing to the next round were dashed for good.
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Cindy Garcia, Rome
Referees: ZAVLANOS, NIKOLAOS (GRE), ANKARALI, RECEP (TUR), CHAMBON, DAVID (FRA)
Attendance: 2500
By Quarter1234
Lottomatica Roma24161319
Tau Ceramica19211819
End of Quarter1234
Lottomatica Roma24405372
Tau Ceramica19405877
Head coach: REPESA, JASMIN
Lottomatica Roma
# 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
5 GIACHETTI, JACOPO 11:45 5 1/1   3/4   2 2 1 1 2     2 2 6
8 TONOLLI, ALESSANDRO 17:15 2 1/1 0/2   1 2 3 2 4   1   4 1 7
9 RIGHETTI, ALEX 13:30 2 1/1 0/2           1 1     1 1  
10 BODIROGA, DEJAN 28:45 17 7/11 1/2   2 1 3 1 1 1     3 1 14
11 STEFANSSON, JON 22:15 1 0/1 0/3 1/2         1 2   1 4 2 -8
13 GARRI, LUCA 19:15 7 2/5 1/1     8 8   3 3     3 2 11
14 CINCIARINI, DANIELE DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
16 PORCARO, YURI DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
18 GABINI, ROBERTO 9:15     0/1   1 3 4     1     3   -1
20 ASKRABIC, OGNJEN 23:45 19 7/9 1/3 2/5 4 3 7 1   2   1 3 2 16
32 CHATMAN, MIRE 27:15 5 2/6 0/3 1/4 1 2 3 3 2 1     3 4 3
34 HAWKINS, DAVID 27:00 14 3/4 2/6 2/2 2 1 3 2 2 2     4 1 11
Team             2 2   1           3
Totals 200:00 72 24/39 5/23 9/17 11 24 35 10 16 15 1 2 30 16 62
61.5% 21.7% 52.9%
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: MALJKOVIC, BOZIDAR
Tau Ceramica
# 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
5 PRIGIONI, PABLO 28:00 5 1/1 1/3     3 3 5 1 2     1 1 10
7 CILLA, JESUS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 RAKOCEVIC, IGOR 27:00 17 1/1 4/8 3/4   3 3 3 3 2     3 2 18
9 VIDAL, SERGI 26:45 10 2/3 2/4         1         2 1 7
10 PLANINIC, ZORAN 11:00 3 0/2   3/6 1 1 2   2 2     3 6 3
12 TELETOVIC, MIRZA 28:15 17 5/6 0/1 7/8 2 1 3 2   2     3 5 19
14 PEKER, KAYA 18:30 3 0/3   3/4 1 3 4 1     2   1 4 9
21 SPLITTER, TIAGO 32:30 18 4/8   10/17 4 5 9 1 3 4     1 10 25
32 HOUSE, FRED 22:00   0/1 0/4     5 5 2 3 2   1 1 1 2
33 ARSLAN, ENDER 6:00 4 2/2       2 2     1     1   4
Team             2 2   4 1         5
Totals 200:00 77 15/27 7/20 26/39 8 25 33 15 16 16 2 1 16 30 102
55.6% 35% 66.7%
This game is not yet played

Head Coaches

REPESA, JASMIN
Lottomatica Roma
"We have to compliment Tau. We were in the game but in the end we weren't able to upset a great team like Tau. To have reached the Top 16 was our aim and what we wanted. The only regret is not to be able to go to Tel Aviv for our last Top 16 game with the qualification at stake. However, we must remain positive and think about our next game."
MALJKOVIC, BOZIDAR
Tau Ceramica
"It is nice to get my first victory with this team but it has been a difficult game, primarily because I'm new at Tau. I didn't try to change too many things within the team so as not to confuse my players. In the first quarter we lacked aggressiveness and focus but we managed to come back, regain our balance and played good defense when it mattered. Tiago Splitter and Igor Rakocevic have pushed the team forward and their contributions have been crucial tonight. Our main aim right now is to recover our injured players and then we will see how far we can go in the tournament."

Players

BODIROGA, DEJAN
Lottomatica Roma
"Tau Ceramica are a great team, they are a squad that will reach the Final Four. Tau has 12 great players and with or without Luis Scola they remain one of the strongest teams in Europe. Roma is new to the Euroleague and Tau this season has beaten stronger teams than Roma. For us already to have reached the Top 16 and being able to play against these teams is a good achievement. We have nevertheless remained in the game until the end, which is not easy against Tau."
PRIGIONI, PABLO
Tau Ceramica
"We are having a great season in the Euroleague and I think the win will give us a big morale boost. But we know the challenge awaits us in the quarterfinals, that is really where we will have to show our true value. We have some time now to work in our game and adapt to our new coach and his philosophy and we hope things can continue to have a great tournament, our aim is always to win this tournament."
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