2019-20Regular SeasonRound 27
March 03, 2020 CET: 19:00
Local time: 20:00 ZALGIRIO ARENA

Zalgiris takes key win over Khimki

Zalgiris Kaunas led from start to finish in defeating Khimki Moscow Region 96-85 on Tuesday evening at Zalgirio Arena. The Lithuanian champs won their third in a row and sixth in their last seven games to leapfrog Khimki in the standings. Both teams have 12-15 records, but Zalgiris captured the head-to-head tiebreaker between them. The game also snapped an eight-game winning streak for Khimki in games between the teams. Zalgiris dominated early to lead 29-15 after 10 minutes and took the margin to 20 in the second quarter. Zalgiris rallied to get within 6 in the fourth quarter, but a flurry of 4 three-pointers by K.C. Rivers helped Zalgiris remain in control and Zach LeDay’s basket-plus-foul helped secure the tiebreaker, too. LeDay paced five Zalgiris scorers in double figures with 23 points, Rivers finished with 15 points, Lukas Lekavicius scored 14, Arturas Milaknis 12 and Edgaras Ulanovas 10. Alexey Shved scored 24 for Khimki, Janis Timma netted 20, Jonas Jerebko tallied 17 points and 10 rebounds and Stefan Jovic added 10 points.



Zalgiris came out firing and took the lead through back-to-back three-pointers by Ulanovas and Milaknis. Threes by Timma and Jovic brought Khimki back. LeDay came off the bench and knocked down a triple that gave the hosts a 20-12 cushion. Shved heated up for Khimki, but Zalgiris continued to score and reeled off the last 9 points of the opening quarter, including a three by Nigel Hayes on the buzzer, to lead 29-15. Thomas Robinson scored first for Khimki in the second quarter, but LeDay remained hot as the hosts surged to 36-17. Rivers made it a 20-point game midway through the quarter with his first – and Zalgiris's sixth – three of the game. The forward duo of Timma and Jerebko kept fighting for Khimki. Lekavicius free throws made it 50-34 at halftime.

Khimki started the second half with back-to-back threes by Shved and Timma to trigger a 0-8 run, which could have been more, but Khimki players combined to miss 3 free throws. Zalgiris responded with a 6-0 spurt before Khimki called a timeout down 56-42. Khimki regrouped again and a Shved-to-Devin Booker alley-oop slam and a deep three by Timma made it 61-54. Shved ended the third quarter with a three-pointer that made it 64-58. Ulanovas bagged a three to get the fans going on the first possession of the fourth quarter. Rivers extended the margin to double figures three times with as many three-pointers to keep Khimki at bay. Jovic scored 5 quick points to bring the visitors within 78-72. After a timeout, Rivers came to the rescue with his 5th three of the game. Slams by LeDay and Ulanovas put the hosts up 88-77 with less than 3 minutes to play. A basket-plus-foul for LeDay with 14.8 seconds left followed by a Zalgiris steal gave the home team the tiebreak advantage too.

Pivotal performer

K.C. Rivers came up big in the fourth quarter when Khimki was rallying hard. The sweet-shooting swingman fired in 3 three-pointers in less than 90 seconds to keep the visitors at bay and had another less than 2 minutes later. In the first 4 minutes of the fourth quarter, Rivers had 12 of Zalgiris's 17 points and almost matched Khimki (14 points) singlehandedly.

Telling stats

It was all about scoring for Zalgiris, which topped the 90-point mark for the fourth time in five games. Zalgiris made 71.9% of its two-pointers, which was a season-high and fifth-best in club history. The hosts also made half of their 28 attempts from downtown. Naturally, with so many shots going in, there were a lot of assists; Zalgiris tied its club record with 29 assists. It was the third time – and second this season – that the club reached that number. Even more impressive was that it did so with just 9 turnovers.

Bench help

Coach Jasikevicus only gave four players significant minutes off the bench, but they played major roles. K.C. Rivers, Lukas Lekavicius, Nigel hayes and Zach LeDay combined for 60 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in 85 combined minutes. Khimki's reserves posted 6 points, 7 boards and 4 assists in 44 minutes.

What’s next?

Zalgiris will look to climb into the playoff zone on Thursday when it visits Zenit St. Petersburg. Khimki will have an extra day off before facing Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul at home in an important clash on Friday.

Zach Leday - Zalgiris Kaunas - EB19
Tuesday, March 3, 2020
Euroleague.net
Referees: RADOVIC, SRETEN; SHEMMESH, SEFFI; ROSSI, MICHELE
Attendance: 13551 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
Zalgiris Kaunas29211432
Khimki Moscow Region15192427
End of Quarter1234
Zalgiris Kaunas29506496
Khimki Moscow Region15345885
Zalgiris Kaunas
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 WALKUP, THOMAS 23:02 4 2/3 0/4   1 2 3 7 1 1     4 1 6
1 RIVERS, KC 19:59 15 0/1 5/8         1 1       2   11
4 LEKAVICIUS, LUKAS 17:22 14 6/6 0/1 2/2   1 1 4   1     2 5 20
10 HAYES, NIGEL 21:48 8 1/2 2/2   2 3 5 3   1 1   1 1 15
13 JANKUNAS, PAULIUS 18:02 4 2/3       5 5 2   1 1     2 12
16 LUKOSIUNAS, KAROLIS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
21 MILAKNIS, ARTURAS 26:51 12 1/1 3/6 1/1   1 1 1 2 2     1   10
23 GEBEN, MARTINAS 0:02                              
31 JOKUBAITIS, ROKAS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
32 LEDAY, ZACH 26:00 23 7/10 2/3 3/5   5 5 3 1 3   1 3 7 26
34 LANDALE, JOCK 14:00 6 2/3   2/2   1 1 2 1       4 2 7
92 ULANOVAS, EDGARAS 32:54 10 2/3 2/4     3 3 6         3 3 16
Team             2 2               2
Totals 200:00 96 23/32 14/28 8/10 3 23 26 29 6 9 2 1 20 21 125
        71.9% 50% 80%
Head coach: JASIKEVICIUS, SARUNAS
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
Khimki Moscow Region
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
0 ROBINSON, THOMAS 8:38 4 2/2   0/1 2 2 4     1     3 3 6
1 SHVED, ALEXEY 33:26 24 5/8 3/9 5/6   2 2 4 1 5     3 6 19
3 KRAMER, CHRIS 15:03 2 1/1 0/1 0/2       3         2 1 1
5 BOOKER, DEVIN 25:32 8 3/4 0/2 2/2 2 1 3 2   1     3 4 10
6 TIMMA, JANIS 38:55 20 4/6 4/6 0/2 1 4 5 4 2 2   1 2 3 23
7 KARASEV, SERGEY DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8 ZAYTSEV, VYACHESLAV DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 VIALTSEV, EGOR DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
11 JEREBKO, JONAS 30:01 17 6/8 1/2 2/4 1 9 10 3 2 2     2 2 25
13 GILL, ANTHONY 15:49   0/3 0/1   2 1 3 1 1 1 1 1 3   -3
24 JOVIC, STEFAN 28:27 10 2/3 2/2 0/2   1 1 7   1     3 1 12
45 BERTANS, DAIRIS 4:09     0/1             1     1   -3
Team           2   2               2
Totals 200:00 85 23/35 10/24 9/19 10 20 30 24 6 14 1 2 22 20 92
        65.7% 41.7% 47.4%
Head coach: KURTINAITIS, RIMAS

Head Coaches

JASIKEVICIUS, SARUNAS
Zalgiris Kaunas
"We started playing so good and I said at halftime that every time we make a little bit of mistakes or we relax, they immediately punish it. There are one of the most talented teams in Europe and this is exactly what happened to us at the beginning of the third quarter; a complete lack of concentration in the game plan and all of a sudden it was 8-0. We're a young team, we're suffering, but we're getting better. And this is most important. I think both teams could really not stop one another. I think it's very difficult to stop Khimki. So fortunately for us, we won the games with offense, which is not great for the coach, but at this point, you take any win and you move on."
KURTINAITIS, RIMAS
Khimki Moscow Region
"First, I want to congratulate the Zalgiris team and Coach Sarunas Jasikevicius on the great game they showed from the first until the last minute. For sure, this is a big step for Zalgiris in terms of looking for the EuroLeague Playoffs. Anyway, we don't lose the position and we are still in the air of the playoffs. We need to think about the next game, how to play against the next team."

Players

LEDAY, ZACH
Zalgiris Kaunas
"We just came out and battled from the beginning. We're fighting real hard trying to come together. We have some momentum and we have to keep it going. Coach was telling us what we're doing wrong [when Khimki rallied in the fourth quarter]. It was little details. Once we were able to cut some of those out and get a couple stops, that helped us because we were making a lot of good plays on offense, so making good plays on defense helped us. We were just being aggressive. [on the final possession,] Coach drew up a good play and it worked. We have to move on. We can celebrate tonight, but tomorrow we get on a flight and we have to move on."
LEKAVICIUS, LUKAS
Zalgiris Kaunas
"I think we won the game with our offense. Khimki is the most talented team offensively, but we made a lot of mistakes defensively and thank god we hit our shots. K.C. [Rivers] pushed us a lot with his threes and we won the game. Next game is in two days, so we can't relax. We hit our shots, but our key is defense. We are not such a talented team, so we have to play defense."