Unicaja overpowers Galatasaray to stay perfect at home
Unicaja Malaga defended Martin Carpena Arena with an 84-57 victory over Galatasaray Liv Hospital. The home side dominated the second half to the tune of 43-15, rendering the closing minutes a celebration for the fans. Unicaja improved to 2-1 in Group C, while Galatasaray slipped to 1-2. Nik Caner-Medley followed up his career-best game last week with 16 points, while Earl Calloway tallied 13 points and 5 assists and Zoran Dragic and Fran Vazquez netted 10 apiece. Jamont Gordon flirted with a triple double for Galatasaray: 12 points, 7 rebounds and 10 assists. Pops Mensah-Bonsu debuted with a double-double, 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Milan Macvan nearly matched him with 11 points and 9 boards. The visitors used a strong second quarter to grab a 41-42 halftime lead, but Unicaja took charge in the second half and left no doubts.
First quarter: Caner-Medley and co. start strong
Zoran Erceg opened the scoring for the visitors with a jumper before Calloway bettered him with a three. Calloway boosted Unicaja with a fastbreak layup and Mindaugas Kuzminskas fed Caner-Medley for a layup and a 7-2 lead. Gordon converted on the offensive glass, but Unicaja continued to attack. Caner-Medley added 2 from the line before Dragic’s triple boosted the lead to 8. Erwin Dudley hit a jumper for the visitors and then found Macvan open for a layup. Caner-Medley and Macvan traded buckets. Mensah-Bonsu came on for his Galatasaray debut. Jayson Granger made it 16-10 with an acrobatic layup. Vazquez finished a lengthy Unicaja attack with a slam. Macvan added free throws. Domantas Sabonis impressed with a spin move inside the final minute to give Unicaja a 20-12 lead.
Second quarter: Gordon, Macvan rally Galatasaray to slim edge
Mensah-Bonsu managed a basket-plus foul early in the second quarter. Sinan Guler buried a three and suddenly the visitors were within 3. Granger buried a three only to see Gordon sink one at the other side. Sabonis scored inside, but Macvan bettered him by drawing the teenager’s second foul and converting a three-point play to make it 25-23. Granger continued to shine with a layup in transition, but an Arroyo triple closed the gap to 1. Caner-Medley nailed a three to give Unicaja some breathing room. Gordon found Macvan wide open for an easy score and then made 2 free throws of his own to tie the score at 32-32. Vladimir Stimac inside and Caner-Medley in transition gave the hosts a 4-point edge. Carlos Arroyo sank a jumper in the lane before Erceg nailed a three in transition as the visitors grabbed a 36-37 lead. Pops added a score, Caner-Medley matched him with free throws. The half ended with a bang as Henry Domercant drained a three and Dragic answered at the other end to make it 41-42.
Third quarter: Unicaja defense helps create double-digit lead
Arroyo opened the second half with a jumper. Kuzminskas bettered him with a three to tie the game at 44-44. A Vazquez tip-in gave Unicaja the lead again. He followed that with a lefty hook. The Unicaja defense held the visitors scoreless for nearly four minutes before Mensah-Bonsu got to the line and made 2 free throws. Unicaja did not pull away during that stretch, but managed to go up 52-46 on a Dragic fast break layup. Kuzminskas shined with an impressive block. Galatasaray continued struggling to get to the basket, but began to blank Unicaja as well. On a broken play, Gordon assisted to Mensah-Bonsu for a slam. Vazquez and Dragic boosted the lead from the line before Calloway found Vazquez open in transition for a slam and the game’s first double-digit lead. Dudley scored inside, but free throws by Carlos Suarez and Stimac gave Unicaja a 61-50 lead.
Fourth quarter: Eleven unanswered points put the game away
Sergi Vidal showed off a nifty sky hook as Unicaja continued to run away. Caner-Medley brought the crowd to its feet with a three and Stimac finished a fast break with a layup for a 20-point lead. His next basket capped a 14-0 run that broke the game open. Gordon scored Galatasaray’s first basket of the quarter after three and a half minutes. Sabonis showed he belonged with a basket in traffic. Gordon came through with a basket-plus-foul, but four minutes to go, the result was pretty clear. Calloway put on a show with 6 late points and Dejan Todorovic iced the win with a spectacular slam.
Thursday, October 31, 2013