Domestic league playoffs: Panathinaikos sweeps the semis

Jun 03, 2019 by Print
Domestic league playoffs: Panathinaikos sweeps the semis

Greece: Lojeski leads the Greens to sweep

Panathinaikos OPAP Athens is the first team to reach Greek League finals after pulling out a 75-82 win over Peristeri Vikos Cola in Game 3 of their best-of-five semifinal series. The defending champion Panathinaikos swept Peristeri to make the league finals for the 17th consecutive season. The Greens built a 30-40 lead late in the second quarter after Nick Calathes hit a triple, and DeShaun Thomas scored a pair of buckets, but Panagiotis Vasilopoulos hit two triples before the half to make it 36-40 at the break. Two teams went on to exchange leads throughout the third quarter and midway through the fourth quarter when Sean Kilpatrick had a fastbreak layup before Matt Lojeski and Calathes knocked down back-to-back threes to cap a 0-10 run and open 67-73 lead. Lojeski followed it up with 8 more points in the next 60 seconds, including two more triples, to open a 73-81 lead and seal the win. Lojeski scored 14 points, including 4 triples, in the fourth quarter, finishing with a game-high 22 points to lead Panathinaikos. Calathes had 11 points and 10 assists, and Ioannis Papapetrou scored 11 in victory. Ben Bentil had 21 points in defeat. In the other series, AEK Athens used a huge third quarter to beat the visiting Promitheas 88-60 and take a 2-1 series lead. Gabe York netted 23 points and Vince Hunter scored 16 in a big victory that has AEK a win away from returning to the Greek League finals for the first time since 2005.


Fenerbahce takes 2-0 lead in Turkish semis

Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul took a 2-0 lead in its Turkish League playoff semifinals series against Tofas Bursa with a 68-64 home victory in Game 2. The hosts held off a late Tofas charge to get within 2 in the final minute. Marko Guduric led the winners with 12 points, Melih Mahmutoglu scored 11 and Nicolo Melli and Kostas Sloukas netted 10 each. Sloukas scored 5 in a 7-0 run late in the second quarter that helped the team to a 34-23 halftime lead. Fenerbahce added to the difference in the third quarter and it reached 48-32 on a Nikola Kalinic layup. Sammy Mejia helped Tofas close the gap with 5 points in a 2-10 charge, but the hosts remained in control, 56-44, through three quarters. Fenerbahce did not let up and after an Ahmet Duverioglu slam the scoreboard reached 66-48, however, Tofas reeled off 16 unanswered points to get within 2 in the final minute. A jumper by Sloukas with 17 seconds remaining ended a 4-plus minute Fenerbahce drought and gave the hosts a two-possession lead and Tofas did not score again. Mejia led Tofas with 16 points and Frank Elegar added 12 in defeat.

Monaco one win away from French finals

AS Monaco led from start to finish in the second game of their best-of-five French League semifinal series, beating the visiting JDA Dijon 84-75 to take a 2-0 lead. Monaco built an 18-6 lead in the first quarter, and the lead was as big as 30-16 midway through the second after baskets from Paul Lacombe, Yakuba Ouatarra and Elmedin Kikanovic. Dijon replied, and got within 4 points later in the quarter, however, Jarrod Jones hit a three-pointer to finish the first half and knocked down another one early in the second half to help Monaco open 50-37 margin. The hosts never lost control and never looked back as Ouattara finished with 23 points and Lacombe netted 22 in victory. Ware scored 20 for Dijon.

Partizan opens Serbian semis in style

Partizan NIS Belgrade made the first step towards the Serbian League finals as it defeated FMP Zeleznik 93-75 in the opener of their best-of-three semifinals series on Monday. Partizan pulled away in the final 2 minutes of the second quarter when Ognjen Jaramaz sparked an 11-3 run for the hosts to open 48-37 halftime lead. The visitors never got closer than 7 points in the second half, and Partizan used three-pointers from Aleksej Nikolic, Marcus Paige and Novica Velickovic to increase the margin to 84-64 with 5 minutes to go in the game, sealing the deal. Djordje Gagic paced the winners with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Velickovic had 15 points, while Nikolic netted 12. Stefan Djordjevic collected 18 points and 7 rebounds in defeat.