2020-21Regular SeasonRound 34
April 08, 2021 CET: 21:00
Local time: 21:00 LA FONTETA

Valencia beats Baskonia to stay alive

In a do-or-die battle for both teams to stay in the race for Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Playoffs, Valencia Basket kept its chances alive by downing TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz 86-81 at La Fonteta on Thursday. Valencia finished the regular season with a 19-15 record and now must get some help from others to qualify for the playoffs. Baskonia finished with an 18-16 record in 10th place. Derrick Williams led the winners with 16 points, Klemen Prepelic added 14, Mike Tobey 13, Nikola Kalinic 12 and Bojan Dubljevic 11 for Valencia. Pierria Henry paced Baskonia with 19 points, Rokas Giedraitis added 17, Achille Polonara 16 and Zoran Dragic had 10 for the guests. Kalinic and Williams helped Valencia to a 25-21 lead after 10 minutes. Behind Henry and Giedraitis, Baskonia led 39-44 at halftime. A wild three-pointer by Prepelic put the hosts ahead, 60-59, at the end of the third quarter. It all came down to the final minutes, in which a three-point play by Tobey and free throws by Williams sealed the outcome.

Giedraitis got Baskonia going with a three-pointer and Luca Vildoza scored off a steal for a 0-5 lead. Polonara and Kalinic each struck from downtown and Williams got Valencia within 7-8. Polonara and Mike Tobey traded dunks and Kalinic's fastbreak layup gave the hosts their first lead, 11-10. Polonara dunked again and Dragic added a driving layup, but Sam Van Rossom and Prepelic boosted Valencia's lead to 18-14. Williams took over with a three-point play and Williams scored again, but Henry kept Baskonia within 25-21 after 10 minutes. Alex Peters found his first points early in the second quarter and Henry scored again. Bojan Dubljevic buried a triple and Prepelic added a layup for a 30-26 Valencia lead. Joan Sastre and a red-hot Henry traded three-pointers. Giedraitis bettered Tobey's put-back slam with a layup-plus-foul. Tobey kept pushing Valencia with a tip-in. After Polonara scored in penetration, Vildoza and Giedraitis each struck from beyond the arc for a 37-40 Baskonia edge. Giedraitis and Henry boosted the margin to 39-44 at halftime.

Tobey dunked again right after the break and Kalinic made it a one-point game. Dragic scored twice around the basket, Henry downed a jumper and Giedraitis hit a corner triple for a 45-53 Baskonia edge. Sastre stepped up with a backdoor layup that Giedraitis bettered with a three-pointer. Williams dunked and got help from Prepelic to give Valencia hope at 54-56. Vanja Marinkovic capped an 8-0 run with a three-pointer, but Polonara and Prepelic - at the third-quarter buzzer - also struck from downtown for a 60-59 score after 30 minutes. Dubljevic and Dragic exchanged baskets early in the fourth quarter and Henry added a three-point play for a 62-64 Baskonia edge. Prepelic scored down low and Dubljevic put Valencia in front with 6 minutes left. Polonara hit a triple and Tadas Sedekerskis added a fastbreak layup to put their team in charge, 68-71. Marinkovic insisted from beyond the arc and soon gave Valencia a 74-72 lead with under 4 minutes to go. Kalinic dunked in traffic and found Tobey for a layup, but Henry and Sedekerskis made it 78-77. Tobey answered with a three-point play and Williams hit free throws for an 83-77 Valencia edge with 55.3 seconds left. Peters scored down low and Sedekerskis hit free throws that brought Baskonia within 83-81 with 10.4 seconds remaining. Williams split free throws and Dubljevic sealed Valencia's win in style with a reverse layup.

Pivotal performer

Derrick Williams had an outstanding performance and led Valencia to what could become a go-ahead victory. He finished the game with 16 points on 4-of-4 two-point shooting plus 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals, a block and 6 fouls drawn for a season-high PIR of 25.

Stellar stat

Rebounds and two-point shots made the difference in this game. Valencia outrebounded Baskonia 42-30 and grabbed 13 offensive boards. Baskonia hit 17 of 18 shots inside the arc (44.7%). Valencia did much better, scoring 20 of its 32 two-point shots (62.5%).

Did you know?

To qualify for the playoffs, Valencia needs Zenit St Petersburg to lose at least once of its two remaining games. Zenit hosts Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv on Friday, April 9 and also plays at home against Panathinaikos OPAP Athens in a postponed game from Round 6 on Monday, April 12. If Zenit wins twice, it will go to the playoffs.

Next game

Baskonia has played its final game of the 2020-21 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague. Valencia, however, may still reach the playoffs depending on other results. If it does, it will automatically qualify for the 2021-22 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague.

Derrick Williams - Valencia Basket - EB20
Thursday, April 8, 2021
Euroleague.net
Referees: PUKL,SASA; RADOVIC, SRETEN; BISSANG, JOSEPH
Attendance: 0 (Tentative)
By Quarter1234
Valencia Basket25142126
TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz21231522
End of Quarter1234
Valencia Basket25396086
TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz21445981
Valencia Basket
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
2 MARINKOVIC, VANJA 12:59 8   2/3 2/2   3 3     1     1 1 9
3 PREPELIC, KLEMEN 15:15 14 3/5 1/3 5/6 1   1 4   2     3 3 12
7 LABEYRIE, LOUIS 11:11   0/1 0/1     4 4     1 1   5 2 -1
9 VAN ROSSOM, SAM 23:55 5 0/1 1/2 2/2   2 2 2 1 4     4 1 1
10 TOBEY, MIKE 21:33 13 6/8 0/1 1/1 3 4 7     3 1   1 2 16
12 KALINIC, NIKOLA 27:22 12 3/6 1/5 3/4 1 3 4 2   5     4 4 5
14 DUBLJEVIC, BOJAN 18:27 11 2/4 1/3 4/4 3 4 7 5 2 3     1 6 23
16 VIVES, GUILLEM 16:08     0/2     2 2 1   1 1   4 1 -2
19 SAN EMETERIO, FERNANDO 3:23     0/1                       -1
21 WILLIAMS, DERRICK 28:49 16 4/4 0/2 8/11 1 3 4 4 4 2 1   3 6 25
24 HERMANNSSON, MARTIN DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
30 SASTRE, JOAN 20:58 7 2/3 1/3   1   1 1 1       1   6
Team           3 4 7               7
Totals 200:00 86 20/32 7/26 25/30 13 29 42 19 8 22 4 0 27 26 100
        62.5% 26.9% 83.3%
Head coach: PONSARNAU, JAUME
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
TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
2 RAIESTE, SANDER DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
3 VILDOZA, LUCA 22:45 6 1/5 1/2 1/2       5 3 2     2 2 6
7 HENRY, PIERRIA 28:19 19 6/13 1/4 4/6 2 1 3 7 3 1   2 2 7 22
8 SEDEKERSKIS, TADAS 30:42 8 1/3 1/4 3/4 1 6 7 1 1       2 2 11
12 DIOP, ILIMANE 15:51       0/2 1 1 2 1 2 1     5 4 1
19 FALL, YOUSSOUPHA 11:01       0/2   1 1     3     3 1 -6
25 PETERS, ALEC 13:42 5 1/4 0/2 3/3 2   2   1 1   2 4 3 -1
30 DRAGIC, ZORAN 20:52 10 4/6 0/1 2/2   5 5 1   4     2 2 9
31 GIEDRAITIS, ROKAS 29:40 17 1/3 4/6 3/3   2 2 1   1     4 5 16
33 POLONARA, ACHILLE 27:08 16 3/4 3/6 1/2 3 3 6 1 2 4     2 1 15
47 KURUCS, ARTURS DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Team           2   2               2
Totals 200:00 81 17/38 10/25 17/26 11 19 30 17 12 17 0 4 26 27 75
        44.7% 40% 65.4%
Head coach: IVANOVIC, DUSKO

Head Coaches

PONSARNAU, JAUME
Valencia Basket
"We started the game with a little bit of nervousness, which came with playing for big goals for us, but we played with intensity, energy and good mentality. The game looked out of any tactics - their first 5 points were off a turnover when we were getting out on the break and an offensive rebound that turned into a three-point shot. That is how the game was: heart was more important than tactics. I am very satisfied with the team because we matched Baskonia's heart and that deserves a lot of credit because we played against a team with the biggest heart in this competition. We had tough, bad times during the games, very often due to turnovers - offensive fouls, three-second violations, all those things that belong to the game, especially in a game like this. They are very good and effective when they are able to run. We didn't lose our composure and found players with energy, good mentality and inspired, also on defense. I think our rebounding work was important. We struggled. We didn't get them and did well when we did. We finished the EuroLeague regular season. We will see if it is also the end of the EuroLeague season, which seems the most probable scenario: Real Madrid won and Zenit has two games which I think they will find the way to win them. We won 19 games in the EuroLeague and have to be very satisfied, but if we don't make it to the playoffs, we will be disappointed because all the things we did were to get that goal."
IVANOVIC, DUSKO
TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz
"First of all, it was a trip with these splendid players, a very beautiful one. We enjoyed it a lot and I honestly believe we deserve to be in the EuroLeague Playoffs. We couldn't make it this season, but I want to congratulate my players because they gave everything they had. We played well and had very, very beautiful games. They showed their character and talent. I believe these players will play the EuroLeague Final Four, I am sure. Second, congratulations to Valencia. I wish them luck. I wish they go to the playoffs. In such a close game, any small details in the final moments can be decisive. But we knew it, me and my players, when we prepared the game, we knew that two things were very important, and they were turnovers and Valencia's offensive rebounds. And we had too many turnovers. I think this was, in general, our weakness tonight."

Players

WILLIAMS, DERRICK
Valencia Basket
"My teammates, they came ready to play. That is the main thing, all of us. It is not just one person. Coach gave us the game plan and we had to execute it. Hats off to the guys in the locker room, we came ready to play. We made more stops than them and that is how you take wins in this league. At the end of the day, we want to take care of our side. If we didn't win tonight, we are not talking about that, so we just want to keep going. At the end of the day, we are going to be watching and hopefully, it will be the best for us."
PREPELIC, KLEMEN
Valencia Basket
"It is never easy to come back, especially in this kind of game. I think that in the last couple of years, Valencia and Baskonia produced some kind of rivalry, but we came back and found a good team spirit in the end of the third quarter. Finally, we brought the win home. We believed until the end, this is sports. You play sports and you play games to win, to go as far as you can go. We did our job tonight. We didn't do it last week, but before this week, we had everything in our hands. We lost to Olympiacos and now, we depend on others. Hopefully, Maccabi or Panathinaikos is going to surprise Zenit. We did our job and now, we have to believe."