Fenerbahce Ulker downed Olympiacos 86-70
Fenerbahce Ulker picked up an important and impressive victory in tightly-wound Group A by downing Olympiacos Piraeus 86-70 on Thursday night. Cutis Jerrells came off the bench for 17 points and 5 assists and Roko Ukic added 16 points as the Turkish champs improved to 4-3. The game was tied late in the second quarter and after FB Ulker moved ahead 42-36 at the break, the Reds closed to within 2 early in the third quarter. But Gasper Vidmar scored half the points in an 8-0 run and the hosts never looked back. Olympiacos did get back within 5 in the fourth quarter, but Jerrells and Ukic took care of business and lifted Fener forward to the win and a the potential tiebreaker over Olympiacos, which won their previous meeting by 7. Omer Onan added 11 for the winners. Kyle Hines paced Olympiacos with 14 points and 7 rebounds and Kalin Lucas scored 13.
The hosts got the loud crowd roaring early with a Ukic triple, but Vassilis Spanoulis soon had the Reds on the scoreboard with a layup-plus-foul. Soon Dimitris Katsivelis converted Olympiacos’s second three-point play to give the visitors a 5-6 lead. Buckets from Ukic and Omar Onan, who also made a free throw after drawing a foul from Spanoulis, gave the Turkish champs a 4-point edge. Olympiacos went inside to Andreas Glyniadakis, who kept it close with a pair of scores. After a TV timeout, The Reds center evened the score at 12-12 from the line. Kostas Papanikolaou tunred a broken play into a long buzzer-beating triple and an Olympiacos lead, but it didn’t last for long. A Thabo Sefolosha layup was followed by a high-flying Ukic-to-James Gist alley-oop and a 16-15 score. Georgios Printezis shined with a pretty back-to-the-basket move that left his team ahead 16-17 through one quarter.
A Martynas Gecevicius three-pointer was followed by an offensive foul on Gasper Vidmar. Hines drove into Vidmar, who was called for his fourth foul in the first minute of the second quarter and took a seat on the bench. Hines made both free throws for a 16-22 Olympiacos lead. Emir Preldzic stuck Hines with his second foul and grabbed 2 points back from the charity stripe. A second Gecevicius three kept the Reds rolling, though Bojan Bogdanovic kept the visitors firing away. Jerrells worked hard for a basket inside and a pair of free throws to narrow the gap to 2, but Glyniadakis answered on the offensive glass. Jerrells spotted a trailing Oguz Savas to even things at 29-29. Ogus soon put the hosts on top with a bucket on the offensive glass. And Jerrells darted through the paint for a layup and a 36-32 edge. FB Ulker finished the half in style as Ukic scored from the line, Onan got a layup and Preldzic added a free throw for an 8-point lead. However Spanoulis fed Papanikolaou for an easy bucket to make it 42-36 at the break.
Michailis Pelekanos started the second half and soon got his first points of the game. Hines then scored at the basket to draw Olympiacos within 2. But FB Ulker woke up in time to stop Hines on defense and with Gist and Vidmar scoring with hook shots. After an Olympiacos timeout, Ukic fed Vidmar for a slam and the hosts’ first double-digit lead of the game, 50-40. Lucas drew a foul and then nailed a triple to quiet the fans a bit, though Ukic came back with a quick drive to the hole. Lucas’s confidence grew as he drove twice to the basket for 4 points and closed the gap to 55-50. Despite a pair of Savas free throws, Marko Keselj swished a triple to further trim the deficit to 3. Bogdanovic free throws and a Spanoulis layup left the score at 59-56 through three quarters.
Jerrells brought cheers from the Fenerbahce faithful with a three-pointer to start the fourth quarter. Hines countered with a basket-plus-foul. Jerrells continued his onslaught with a tough layup before Onan lifted the lead to 66-58 with a layup in transition. Hines, in the paint, fueled the Reds, but Jerrells hit back with a jumper. Preldzic stretched the lead up to 70-60. Printezis free throws and Hines inside kept Olympiacos alive. Lucas trimmed the deficit to 72-66 midway through the fourth quarter, However the Reds attack stalled and after Jerrells free throws, Ukic lifted the lead back to 10 with just over three minutes remaining. And an Ukic triple essentially sealed the win.
Thursday, December 1, 2011