Bayern crown their great EuroLeague week in Berlin
What a great Double Week for the Bayern basketball team: Thanks to an enormous effort, head coach Andrea Trinchieri's team triumphed in the prestigious EuroLeague rivalry game at Alba Berlin just 45 hours after the coup over Milan (83-77) - the 82-69 away win was the fifth competitive win in a row for the cup winners. In the top division, the Munich team, which is still short of players, has won three games in a row and is now 3-4.
In front of around 4,600 fans in the Arena at the Ostbahnhof in Berlin, the FCBB went on a 10-0 run in the first quarter to take a 14-9 lead (7), only a few makes from distance were missing until the break.Rebounds brought Berlin back in the game as both teams were aware of the back-to-back strain. For FCBB, still without Radosevic, Zipser and the newly ill playmaker Sisko, all-rounder Nick Weiler-Babb (16) had decisive moments on offense in the end. In addition to the guards, center Othello Hunter showed a strong performance with 13 points and eight rebounds.
Alba Berlin - FC Bayern Basketball 69-82 (36-37)
Darrun Hilliard (25 Points/6 Rebounds), Nick Weiler-Babb (16), Othello Hunter (13/8 Rebounds), Augustine Rubit (9), Corey Walden (9), Deshaun Thomas (4), Andreas Obst (3), Valdimir Lucic (3), Ognjen Jaramaz, Jason George, Nihad Djedovic und Gavin Schilling
Maodo Lo (23 Points)
Sasa Pukl, Carlos Cortes, Jurgis Laurinavicius
Quotes:Andrea Trinchieri: "It was a tough game. As it always is in back-to-back games: You're drained from the first game and the travel, but that's true for both teams. It's like fighting in the mud - you feel heavy and you're slow. But we found a way to get into transition and find our guys. Othello, Darrun and Corey were key players, but this is a win for the whole team. Those three gave us a boost on offense, but this was a defensive win. (...) This is a very important win for us, away in the EuroLeague. (...) We found a way to produce our best performance at the end. We had a super-solid defense in the last quarter, hit open sh. Albotsa played very aggressive defense, we were a bit timid. In the end, we did the right things. (...) We needed these games after our tough start to the season, when we didn't know which players would play. Then the solid games in the EuroLeague and in the BBL just give you a boost of confidence. But I know how the season has developed now, after we were a little fragile. Because we didn't have our backbone, because the returning players couldn't be ready to develop the system with the new players. It was like a roller coaster, but when you win against Milan, in Kaunas and in Berlin, you can say we are a team that can get games." Darrun Hilliard: "We just wanted it more. We had a great chance at the end and we took it. Alba is a great team with good players, but we hit the important shots in the end. Nick made important plays for us at the end, but so did Corey and Othello, it was a team win. It felt good. Personally, I wasn't trying to score at all. I try to find a good balance between scoring, ball distribution and rebounding together with Coach Trinchieri. I did what the game gave me and took my chances."
The starting five consisted of Corey Walden, Ognjen Jaramaz, Vladimir Lucic, Augustine Rubit and Gavin Schilling. The Berliners got off to the better start and established their quick game through ex-Munich player Maodo Lo (2-7 from FCBB's point of view/4th minute). Othello Hunter changed that within seconds after his substitution with five quick points. Darrun Hilliard joined in from the three-point line. With a lot of pressure, Bayern forced six turnovers in the first quarter, which the Albatrosse survived with two threes from Jaleen Smith (19-18).
At the beginning of the second quarter, the hosts increasingly crept into the opponent's zone, which Trinchieri did not like at all - quick time-out (23-23/12th minute). While Smith slowly cooled down, Rubit showed his complete repertoire and moved towards the basket with force after a three-pointer. The game became more heated now, which Israel Gonzalez's team took advantage of to get back in it via the free-throw line (33-32/17th). But especially Hunter (11 points/6 rebounds in the first half) countered with a lot of intensity and secured a narrow lead at the break (37-36).
In the second half, the game remained at neck-and-neck and the paly was characterized by defensive toughness. Hilliard knew how to break through this with his creativity as the Bayern guard put up a whopping 11 points in a row (45-42/24th). With the support of Andi Obst and Nick Weiler-Babb the guests gained a small lead (55-50/27th). But Alba again took advantage of a hectic phase and did not let itself be shaken off with two three-point plays. Thus, the third quarter also ended with only one score difference and a razor-thin lead for the guests (57:-55).
In the final period, the opponents lost numerous turnovers. Only after three minutes did Weiler-Babb score points from the free-throw line and the all-rounder showed his strongest quarter in the EuroLeague thus far: Two jumpers landed and kept his team in front (68-64/37th). A three-pointer by Walden deep in the clock brought back memories of the triumph against Milan, and Weiler-Babb added to that with another three-pointer. With one minute left, the Munich team suddenly led by double digits. A tight game throughout found its deserved winner with ice-cold free-throws and a 15-4 run by Bayern (82-69).
(c) Stickel & Hoffmann