Alba Berlin sealed first place in Group H after beating Anwil Wloclawek at the O2 World on Tuesday 92-73. With the win, Alba Berlin joined Benetton Bwin as the only teams to remain undefeated through five games. Anwil dropped to 0-5 and will try to notch its first win next week against Pepsi Caserta. Yassin Ibdihi paced the winners with 15 points, Tadija Dragicevic and Julius Jenkins added 13, and Derrick Allen scored 10, as Alba shot 73% from inside the arc and dominated after a 12-2 run in the first quarter. Berlin will have a chance to finish the regular season undefeated when it faces Krasnye Krylia next. Andrezj Pluta led Anwil with 13 points, Dardan Berisha and Paul Miller added 12 each and Nikola Jovanovic scored 10.
Alba went to Patrick Femerling early in the first quarter with hopes of establishing a post presence, while Wloclawek’s first basket was a three pointer by Lukasz Majewski. It soon was 9-8 for the hosts, after Jenkins scored his second basket of the game on a driving layup. Berlin then showed why it leads the group standings with some stifling defense that produced 3 turnovers and forced shots in the ensuing three minutes to fuel a 12-2 run for a 21-10 advantage. Eric Hicks and Stipe Modric stopped the bleeding with a couple of layups before Darryl Thompson hit a jumper that closed the quarter at 25-16 for the hosts. Head coach Luka Pavicevic’s men went full throttle to start the second, and a pair of three-pointers by Sven Schultze got a 9-0 run going before Berisha scored a long-range bomb for Anwil. As the visitors tried to spread the floor, Dragicevic and Ibdihi started producing for Berlin, and a Femerling layup and Jenkins three got them back to a big margin at 49-28, after Bryce Taylor converted a couple of free throws. Anwil attacked the basket and got to the line as well, but only enough to close out the half at a 55-33 deficit, as Berlin proved stout on both ends of the floor.
The visitors mustered a 2-8 push to start the third quarter with Hicks working the low post, though Dragicevic and Immanuel McElroy combined to hit the next three baskets and 8 consecutive points for a 65-41 home advantage. The visitors’ own one-two punch, Miller and Thompson, answered for 8 of their own and the quarter was over at 70-49. Berisha and Marko Marinovic traded triples to start the final period, but again it was Alba striking the early blows, as Lucca Staiger widened the margin to the biggest difference at 81-54. Pluta gave Anwil some push and the visitors went on a 0-12 run, but with three minutes left Dragicevic and Ibdihi sealed the scoring for the Group H winners.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010