Barcelona downs Zalgiris as Navarro shines again
FC Barcelona Lassa improved to 3-4 in Group F by downing Zalgiris Kaunas 92-86 at home on Friday. Barcelona snapped its two-game losing streak, while Zalgiris dropped to 1-6 at the halfway mark of the Top 16. Juan Carlos Navarro led the winners with 14 points, Pau Ribas added 13, Alex Abrines 12, Samardo Samuels 11 and Tomas Satoransky 10. Renaldas Seibuis led Zalgiris with 19 points, while Edgars Ulanovas starred with 17 points, 8 rebounds and 3 steals. Lukas Lekavicius added 16 points, Ian Vougioukas 14 and Paulius Jankunas posted 11 points and 7 rebounds in defeat. Vougioukas had 6 points in a 0-8 run that gave Zalgiris an early 4-12 lead. Navarro stepped up for Barcelona and a three-pointer by Justin Doellman brought the hosts within 16-19 after 10 minutes. Sasha Vezenkov and Abrines fueled a 9-0 run that caused Zalgiris to call timeout at 29-23. A three-pointer by Satoransky made it a double-digit game, 36-26, but Martynas Sajus and Kaspars Vegvagars brought the guests within 38-31 at halftime. Abrines shined after the break and got plenty of help everywhere to give Barcelona a 65-55 margin after 30 minutes. A dunk by Satoransky sealed the outcome, 73-57, with seven minutes to go, though Zalgiris never quit and pushed Barcelona until the final minutes.
First quarter: Vougioukas puts Zalgiris ahead
Samuels got Barcelona going with a layup, but free throws by Ulanovas and a five-meter jumper by Vougioukas gave Zalgiris its first lead, 2-4. Samuels shined with a backdoor layup, but Vougioukas hit a jump hook and Seibuis downed a jumper off the dribble. Vougioukas kept pushing Zalgiris with another jump hook and a driving layup that caused the hosts to call timeout at 4-12, after a 0-8 run. Navarro rescued Barcelona with a three-pointer and fed Ante Tomic for a close jumper that brought the hosts within 3. Lekavicius hit a one-handed jumper in the lane, which Navarro erased with his trademark bomba. Ulanovas nailed a big three-pointer over Tomic, who answered with a layup at the other end. Sajus scored around the basket, but Doellman did better with a three-pointer that fixed the score at 16-19 after 10 minutes.
Second quarter: Barcelona improves defense, takes lead
Tomic split free throws early in the quarter, but an unstoppable Vougioukas buried a baseline jumper for a 4-point Zalgiris lead. Brad Oleson buried a catch-and-shoot triple from the right corner and Martynas Pocius quickly answered with driving layup. Doellman split free throws and Pu Ribas hit two attempts to tie it at 23-23. Sasha Vezenkov came in after a timeout and immediately delivered with a layup off a steal. Shane Lawal split foul shots and Abrines struck from downtown to boost the hosts' lead to 29-23, after a 9-0 run. Zalgiris called timeout and Ulanovas nailed a three-pointer, but Oleson quickly answered with a six-meter jumper for a 31-26 Barcelona lead. Tomic and Navarro split free throws and a three-pointer by Tomas Satoransky made it a double-digit game, 36-26. Tomic picked up his third foul a minute before halftime. Sajus scored in the paint but Abrines matched that with free throws. A buzzer-beating triple by Kaspars Vegvagars brought Zalgiris within 36-29 at the break.
Third quarter: Great offense helped hosts pull away
Ulanovas made free throws immediately after the break and Jankunas added a put-back layup that made it a 3-point game. Abrines stepped up with a bomb from downtown and a six-meter jumper that restored a 43-35 Barcelona margin. Doellman nailed a jumper from the elbow, which Seibutis matched with a six-meter shot. Ribas downed a three-pointer from the top of the key and added a floater to boost his team's lead to 50-37. Lekavicius hit a jumper and Jankunas bettered Lawal's put-back slam with a triple to make it 52-42. Navarro made free throws and a three-pointer by Seibutis got Zalgiris within single digits. Satoransky split foul shots and Navarro sank a triple, which prompted the guests stop the game at 58-45. Lekavicius buried a corner triple and Seibutis split free throws, but Lawal kept Barcelona comfortably ahead, 60-49. After Vougioukas hit a jump hook, Stratos Perperoglou downed a triple and free throws by Satoransky made it a 14-point game. Lekavicius brought Zalgiris a bit closer, 65-55, after 30 minutes.
Fourth quarter: Zalgiris’s late rally falls short
Jankunas took over with an off-balance layup early in the quarter. Doellman split free throws and a driving layup by Perperoglou boosted the hosts' margin to 68-57. Navarro nailed a three-pointer off the dribble and a huge fast break dunk by Satoransky prompted Zalgiris to call timeout at 73-57. Lekavicius hit another corner triple and a backdoor layup by Seibutis gave Zalgiris hope at 73-62. Perperoglou downed a turnaround jumper and a fast break layup by Satoransky kept Barcelona in control at 77-62. Seibutis and Vougioukas hit free throws and Lekavicius added an acrobatic layup, but Samuels kept the hosts comfortably ahead, 80-67. Seibutis returned to the foul line for two more and Vougioukas split attempts, but it was already too late for Zalgiris, as Barcelona kept full control of the situation until the final buzzer.
Friday, February 12, 2016