Bayern suffers a 79-75 loss in St. Petersburg

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The Bayern basketball team missed out on its tenth EuroLeague win of the season as Head coach Andrea Trinchieri's team lost 79-75 at rival Zenit St. Petersburg after a weak final quarter. After taking a 60-48 lead shortly before the end of the third quarter, Munich's offense managed only 15 more points, while the hosts (now 8-4) hit a total of eleven three-pointers. The best scorer for Bayern, who only grabbed 28 rebounds (Zenit 30) and sorely missed their injured top scorer Vladimir Lucic in the unfocused final quarter, was center Jalen Reynolds with 13 points.

The FCBB will meet Spanish champion Baskonia Vítoria Gasteiz (6-7) on Friday evening, followed by the BBL top game in Oldenburg on Sunday.


Zenit Sankt Petersburg – FC Bayern Basketball 79-75 (35-43)


Jalen Reynolds 13 Punkte/5 Rebounds, D.J. Seeley 12, Wade Baldwin 12/5 Rebounds/3 Steals, Paul Zipser 10, Nihad Djedovic 8, Zan Mark Sisko 7/6 Assists, JaJuan Johnson 6, Leon Radosevic 4, Nick Weiler-Babb 3, Robin Amaize, Sasha Grant und Diego Flaccadori.

Top scorer St. Petersburg

Billy Baron (20 Points)


Juan Carlos Garcia, Ilija Belosevic, Spiros Gkontas

Points per quarter Bayern - Zenit: 20-14, 23-21, 17-21, 15-23.

Stats: Two-point shooting: 56% (FCBB) // 50% (Zenit); Three-point shooting: 42.9% // 47.8%; Free-throw shooting: 78.6% // 85.7%; Rebounds: 28 // 30; Assists: 18 // 18; Turnovers: 12 // 12.

Andrea Trinchieri: "To comment on this game is very difficult. Regardless, I congratulate Zenit on the victory. I believe that we controlled the game before giving it away. We gave Zenit a big gift early before Christmas. I take the blame for that because we were not in a position that my players had the necessary game discipline. It's extremely disappointing and sad to concede such a game that you clearly controlled. We failed because of our poor concentration and sloppy tempo. So in ten minutes we tore down all the value we've built up so far this season."

Wade Baldwin: "We can't lose this game. But it's our own fault, we weren't focused enough and we threw away the win." 

Game recap:
Bayern and Zenit started as expected with a defensive-minded game, free throws and quick transition was scarce at first. Seeley was the first to assert himself in one-on-one, twice for a total of five points in a row. Since Djedovic had also hit his first three-pointer earlier, the visitors led 10-4 after six minutes. Former Bayern guard K.C. Rivers scored again with his left-handed three-pointer to equalize the score at 14-14 (9th). But the FCBB countered with six points; Sisko drove to the basket once again in the last attack before the first quarter break - 20-14 Bayern lead.

Overall, Bayern defended very effectively against Zenit's playmaker and top scorer Pangos (7 points), with Sisko, Baldwin and, after the break, Weiler-Babb. On offense, the ball moved better and Zipser was thus twice free behind the three-point line - where he hit both for a 29-23 lead after 16 minutes. They increased the tempo overall and kept finding someone who delivered. At the beginning of the quarter it was center Reynolds, then Zipser and before the break Baldwin, who was sent to the line several times. On the opposite side, center Gudaitis (10 of his 12 points by the break) was a problem in the pick-and-roll. But FCBB set the final point tone after an offensive rebound by Sisko, Weiler-Babb got an and-one and for an eight-point lead at break (43-35). 

Seely's three-pointer and the next fast-break by Djedovic brought a 10-2 run to start the second half,  50:37 (23rd).  St. Petersburg created new chances via rebounds, and the Munich squad got sloppy. On the one hand, the Russians did not let themselves be shaken off, complete on the other hand, the FCBB still scored when the game got too close - (55-44/25th). However, when Baron from far outside cut it to 60-53 (29th) and then Hollins hit a crazy buzzer-beater from his own half and the lead was cut to 60-56. 

These two baskets revived Zenit and Hollins hit another three. Bayern's choice of shots showed a certain nervousness after the bizarre events just before the last quarter. With five minutes to play, Poythrees converted his bonus free throw to tie the game at 66. Sisko immediately hit a three-pointer, but so did Pangos, as did Hollins and the game remained tied. Ponitka's three-pointer fell cleanly for the first Zenit lead 72-71 with 2:37 minutes left. Sisko's amazing tip-in gave FCBB another 75-72 advantage (38th). But Barons promptly equalized with his team's eleventh three-pointer. When Poythrees made it 79-75 for St. Petersburg with 36 seconds left, the defeat was sealed. FCBB lost the last quarter 15-23 and deserved to lose the game.


Photo credit: Sergey Grachev


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