Limoges youngsters star to defeat Cedevita
Limoges CSP overpowered visiting Cedevita Zagreb 82-68 in the team's EuroCup opener on Wednesday. The hosts were in control for nearly the entire game thanks to outstanding efforts on both ends of the floor by its cadre of young, promising players. Axel Bouteille led the way with 24 points, William Howard scored 21 and Dwight Hardy added 12. Mam Jaiteh collected 9 points and 9 rebounds and London Perrantes dished 10 assists to go with 8 points. James Bell led the Cedevita attack with 22 points and Justin Cobbs added 14.
Limoges provided plenty of early hustle and highlights in jumping out to a 15-7 lead, but an agressive Bell led Cedevita right back. The hot shooting of Bouteille lifted the hosts to a 21-19 edge after 10 minutes. Howard provided highlights at both ends as Limoges extended its advantage to 31-24. Hardy added a big jumper as the hosts rolled to a 44-33 lead at the break. Howard opened the second half with a three and later added a baseline jam to the delight of the fans. Though Limoges remained firmly in control, the 63-52 margin through three quarters left an opening for Cibona. Limoges seemed to slam that door shut with Jonathan Rousselle's three-point play, but the difference was back to single digits after a Toni Perkovic triple with three minutes to go, 70-61. After a deep three-pointer – plus a foul – from Howard put the game on ice.
Hello future star!
Limoges was planning on using Samardo Samuels to anchor its frontline this season, but found itself without the big man on Wednesday due to injury. Teenage talent Sekou Doumbouya took advantage of the opportunity and proved that he is already capable of being a difference maker at this level. He played confident on offense, even though he did not score, and wreaked havoc on Cedevita's would-be scorers with his blocked shots. It was a performance that will ensure scouts around the world start lining up to watch Doumbouya on a weekly basis.
Heart of a champion
James Bell is a EuroCup champion, even though injury kept him from participating in the critical games at the end of last season with Darussafaka Istanbul. Last night was his first game back in he competiton and he made up for lost time. Bell was aggressive for Cedevita and kept it close early before finishing with a team high 22 points. He proved to be a true champion.
Limoges travels to Russia in Round 2 for a tough test against Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar. Cedevita will play ALBA Berlin in its home opener.
Wednesday, October 3, 2018