|Spartak Saint Petersburg outduelled KK Buducnost Voli on the road 57-65 to win its opening game in Group K. The hosts tied the game early at 10-10, then pulled to 49-51 in the fourth quarter but the visitors always had the answer in the form of Patrick Beverley, who led all scorers with 25 points, and Vladimir Dragicevic, who added 18 with 9 rebounds. Yotam Halperin dished out 6 assists for the winners. Jermaine Anderson led the way for Buducnost with 11 points, while Cedomir Vitkovac contributed 10 along with 3 steals.
Spartak took an early 3-8 lead as Beverley hit a two-pointer from outside and Vladimir Dragicevic scored twice from down low. Bojan Dublevic put in a layup for Buducost to cut the lead to 5-8. Then Anderson nailed a three-pointer for the hosts, followed by an exchange of layups by Beverley and Vitkovac, which tied the game at 10-10. Spartak went back out front with a 2-6 run, capped off by Beverley’s two-pointer from the outside, as the visitors took a 12-16 lead after the first 10 minutes. Dragicevic stayed active down low to open the second quarter, scoring twice more and extending the Spartak lead to 13-20. Buducnost also found a way to score in the paint, as Aleksa Popovic knocked in two consecutive layups to pull to 17-20. After Beverley and Dragicevic each scored down low, Janis Strelnieks drilled a triple to give Spartak breathing room, 19-27. Free throws and a layup by Milan Milosevic brought Buducnost back in striking distance, 24-27, but the visitors stepped on the gas again with another layup by Dragicevic and consecutive three-pointers by Victor Keyru and Beverley to open a 24-35 lead. The hosts answered with 5 straight points, including a triple by Anderson, before a free throw and a two-pointer by Beverley closed the half with Spartak on top 29-38.
Vitkovac opened scoring with a layup, then Halperin hit from beyond the arc as Spartak took its first double-digit lead, 31-41. Popovic’s free throws and a Vikovac layup cut the lead to 35-41. After Dragicevic scored a two-pointer, the scoreboard stayed still for nearly three minutes, when Dublevic hit free throws for a 37-43 difference. After an exchange of points, Nikola Ivanovic drained a triple for Buducnost to end the quarter, as the hosts pulled to 42-45. The scoreboard moved ahead with free throws and an exchange of layups, then Popovic knocked home a triple as the hosts moved closer, 49-51. Spartak held on to its narrow lead as Beverley hit from downtown and added a free throw, setting the score at 52-55 with just under 5 minutes to play. Vitkovac and Bojan Krstovic put in layups for the hosts, but Beverley and Dragicevic kept scoring to secure a 57-65 win for Spartak.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012