KK Buducnost Voli Podgorica reached the Eurocup Quarterfinals for the second consecutive season by thrashing Banvit BK Bandirma 66-50 in a do-or-die showdown in the Montenegrin capital in Last 16 Group I on Wednesday. Both teams finished the stage with 3-3 records, but Buducnost advanced due to its tie-break advantage - Banvit had registered an 89-80 home win in Game 2 and needed to have lost by fewer than 9 this week. Dee Bost led the winners with 16 points. Cedomir Vitkovac and Strahinja Milosevic each added 11 for Buducnost. Kalin Lucas paced Banvit with 12 points. Bost and Vitkovac struck from downtown in an 8-0 opening run but Vladimir Stimac and Sammy Mejia soon allowed Banvit to tie it at 11-11. Three-pointers by Vitkovac and Strahinja Milosevic gave Buducnost a 17-14 lead after 10 minutes. Banvit struggled to score early in the second quarter. Meanwhile, Marko Popovic and Dusko Bunic helped Buducnost to a 34-19 margin, enough to keep a 36-21 lead at halftime. Nothing changed after the break, as Buducnost boosted its margin to 51-31 and then again to 67-46 late in the fourth quarter to seal its ticket to the next round.
Bost got Buducnost going with a three-pointer, igniting an 8-0 run that Vitkovac capped with his own triple. Stimac rescued Banvit with a layup and a triple - in his first attempt from downtown this season. Keith Simmons capped a 0-7 Banvit run with a layup that Gerald Lee bettered with a three-point play. Back-to-back jumpers by Mejia and Chuck Davis tied it at 11-11. Vitkovac and Lucas traded triples and Strahinja Milosevic joined the three-point shootout to put Buducnost back ahead, 17-14, after 10 minutes. Serkan Erdogan and Nikola Ivanovic exchanged baskets early in the second quarter and a layup by Vladimir Mihailovic made it a five-point game, 21-16. Bunic scored down low and Marko Popovic followed a jumper with a three-pointer that made it a double-digit game, 28-17, after a 14-3 run. Simmons made free throws but close baskets by Strahinja Milosevic and Bunic made Banvit call timeout at 32-19. Aleksa Popovic found his first points, Lucas made free throws but Bost answered in the same way to make Buducnost get a 15-point lead, 36-21, at halftime.
Both teams struggled to score after the break until Aleksa Popovic stepped up with a layup. Banvit went scoreless for more than 4 minutes until Lucas made free throws. Lee scored around the basket, as news from Ukraine arrived - Budivelnik was leading, turning the game into a make-or-break battle. Kenan Barjamovic scored down low but Bost bettered that with a three-pointer that broke the game open, 43-25. Erdogan and Lucas tried to change things with consecutive baskets but a red hot Bost struck twice from downtown and a put-back basket by Lee boosted the hosts' lead to 51-31. Banvit called timeout and free throws by Erdogan and Mejia brought the guests a but closer, 51-35, after 30 minutes. Banvit knew it could advance with an eight-point loss and Davis scored down low for a 51-37 deficit. Bunic stepped up with a layup and a three-pointer by Vitkovac restored a 56-37 Buducnost lead. Lucas downed a triple and Mejia scored again but Vitkovac and Strahinja Milosevic kept Buducnost out of trouble, 62-42, with over 4 minutes to go. Davis and Simmons made free throws but a dunk by Strahinja Milosevic and another three-pointer by Bost sealed the outcome, 67-46. Nothing changed in the final 2 minutes, in which all Buducnost fans had plenty of time to celebrate that their team is back to the Eurocup Quarterfinals!
Wednesday, February 20, 2013