Bayern heads to finals after sweep
FC Bayern Munich's basketball team have won the Game 3 of the Semi-finals against the surprise team of the year, Rasta Vechta. With a final score of 95-80 they earned a spot in the play-off finals for the fourth time in club history. The first final against the winner of the Berlin, Oldenburg series will take place next Sunday, June 16th, starting at 18:00. The regular season winner Bayern will have home-court advantage.
To the ticket shop
6,102 spectators in the Audi Dome again experienced a fun game against a team that put together a brilliant season. The defending champions started strong before Vechta came up with several threes before the break. Bayern tightened their defense after the half and clinched the Finals berth with relative ease. On the other side, TJ Bray (38 points/10 of three) could hardly be stopped, but the Munich team won the rebound duel (34-26) and had an impressive 24 assists. Vladimir Lucic and Danilo Barthel were the top scorers with 17 points each.
Points per quarter Bayern - Vechta: 29-12, 20-29, 28-19, 18-20.
FCBB Stats: Vladimir Lucic (17 points/3 threes), Danilo Barthel (17/6 rebounds), Nihad Djedovic (15/3 threes), Stefan Jovic (14/7 assists), Devin Booker (8), Nemanja Dangubic (7), Petteri Koponen (6), Maodo Lo (4), Derrick Williams (4), Leon Radosevic (3/8 rebounds), Alex King and Robin Amaize.
FCBB head coach, Dejan Radonjic: "Congratulations to Pedro for the outstanding season. It was important for us to get into a good rhythm today. We played better than in the quarter-finals and were able to muster a lot of energy. We controlled the game except for one phase in the second quarter and, above all, had a good three-way percentage. I especially liked the second quarter. Now we stand with a 3-0 sweep and are in the final and look forward to the home game next Sunday."
Vechta head coach, Pedro Calles: "First of all congratulations to Dejan Radonjic and the whole organisation and good luck for the final. I'm from the south of Spain, so I'm an emotional person and I'm trying to control my emotions now. My team wanted to try everything and played with a lot of commitment, we gave everything against a very strong team from Munich. I want to thank my players who made it this far. It was a pleasure to coach this series and the whole season. TJ Bray was outstanding, he worked all season to get better every day. He taught me more about basketball than I taught him."
Maodo Lo, Nihad Djedovic, Lucic, Barthel and Devin Booker were the starting five for FCBB coach Dejan Radonjic. Lucic and Barthel nailed a pair of threes and Vechta was forced to take an early time-out. Remarkably the Bavarians started the first five minutes without a missed shot and took a 14-7 lead. A three from Stefan Jovic marked the first double-digit lead for Munich with six minutes ticked off the clock. Bayern had the matter under control, a crisp defense robbed the guests of their flow of play and on offense the hosts acted decisively and focused The hosts dominated the first quarter and took a clear 29-12 lead heading into the first quarter break.
Bray, Vechtas' untiring floor leader, scored seven fast points, Hinrichs added two more and they reduced the gap to ten points - time-out Bavaria. FCBB captain Barthel marched ahead and contributed four points in succession to remain clearly ahead at 35-21. Vechta remained within striking distance and again it was Bray who led his team from the free-throw line to within nine of the favorites. After exactly five minutes, Coach Radonjic again recognized the need to speak to his club because the guests had again reached to within single-digits with a score of 37-29. A Nemanja Dangubic three after an important offensive rebound was worth its weight in gold, but a few seconds later Vechta had an answer of their own and in a blink were just five back. The visiting team now turned the tables around and reduced their deficit with a remarkable goalscoring from beyond the three-point line. The last two minutes before half-time were played hot and heavy by both teams but the Bavarians asserted themselves firmly and fought for a 49-41 lead after 20 minutes.
The Munich team did the the right thing by defending uncompromisingly, closing cleverly at the front and ran the Vechtans into the ground with a brilliant 16-4 run during the first four minutes of the third quarter to take a huge 65-45 lead. Bray resisted with his seventh three but the Bavarians also have a distance specialist in their ranks and Petteri Koponen pocketed his second three-pointer to help keep the big lead. The Bavarians controlled the game, Jovic was in charge and slowed things down and ended the quarter with a 77-60 lead.
Of course Vechta didn't give up and Bray sank his ninth three but the advantage remained sure for the home team. Munich played the attacks patiently and let the visitors run a lot on defense. Barthel went to work in the paint and with an offensive rebound put the ball home and was fouled in the process. A three by Djedovic was conclusive and the series was won.
Upcoming dates - BBL Finals:
Final 1: Sunday, June 16th 18:00 (Audi Dome)
Final 2: Wednesday, June 19th 20:30
Final 3: Sunday, June 23rd 18:00 (Audi Dome)
Final 4 (if necessary): Tue, June 25th 20:30
Final 5 (if necessary): Fri, June 28th 20:30
Photo-Creidt: Stickels and smoking stones