Montepaschi Siena team profile

Jun 28, 2007 by Euroleague.net Print
Montepaschi SienaOne of the newest powers on the continental stage, Montepaschi Siena got accustomed quickly to major success when it reached the Final Four in its first Euroleague two seasons. Montepaschi is now back after a season in the ULEB Cup and once it won the Italian League title in a record-breaking year, ready to stay as competitive as ever. The club's basketball roots reach as deeply as any in Italy. Mens Sana Basket claims it was the first Italian club to play, organize and teach basketball soon after Dr. James Naismith founded the sport in 1891. In the modern era of basketball, Siena's presence wasn't felt professionally until it entered Italy's first division in 1973. After slowly establishing itself in the Italian elite, Siena graduated to European competitions for most of the 1990s. That experience led it to make history in 2001-02 when Vrbica Stefanov, Milenko Topic or Petar Naumoski brought home the club's very first trophy, the Saporta Cup, downing Pamesa Valencia 81-71 in the title game. In its first Euroleague season, 2002-03, the club managed to clinch a last-chance spot in the Top 16, then exploded to win its Top 16 group and secure an historic Final Four berth led by Michalis Kakiouzis, Mirsad Turkcan or the late Alphonso Ford, Benetton stood on its way to the semifinals. In 2003-04, Montepaschi inked Bootsy Thornton, David Vanterpool or David Andersen and not only returned to the Final Four, but also finished a memorable season by bringing its very first Italian League title to Siena with a thrilling playoff finals sweep.
2006-07 RESULTS
ULEB Cup
R. Season
8-2
Playoffs
Quarters
Italian League
R. Season
30-4
Playoffs
Champion
Cup
Semis
Montepaschi was closer than ever to reach the Euroleague final in Tel Aviv, but lost against Skipper Bologna 102-103 in overtime. The team bounced back with the Italian League title, that took the club to another level also at home. Starting last season as a team to watch, Montepaschi could no longer surprise anyone, and had particular difficulties playing on the road. Its trip to the Top 16 would have satisfied many teams, as would a third-place finish in the Italian League regular season and a domestic playoff run that fell short of semifinals. Montepaschi missed the Top 16 in the 2005-06 season and was knocked off in the Italian League quarterfinals. The team bounced back this season in style, reaching the ULEB Cup quarterfinals before losing against Unics Kazan and above all, winning its second Italian League title. Rimantas Kaukenas, Joseph Forte and Terrell McIntyre not only helped Montepaschi to sweep the league finals, but also finished its domestic season with a 39-5 overall record. The team chemistry is better than ever in Siena, as Montepaschi returns to the Euroleague with more ambition than ever.