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Bayern fall short of repeat

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FC Bayern Basketball took the BEKO Basketball Bundesliga Finals to the limit, however their goal to repeat as champions fell short after losing 88-84 to the Brose Baskets in Game 5.

Bamberg jumped out to an early lead and Bayern were always playing catch-up and could never get even, trailing by 13 points at halftime. A defensive struggle in the third quarter led to an offensive explosion in the fourth that allowed Munich to claw back into the game. Despite getting within striking distance, Bayern never took advantage of the opportunities to take the lead and Bamberg held off Munich in the end to win the 2014-15 league title.

Despite the disappointing end, Bayern can look back to positive moments during the season: playing in the Euroleague and Eurocup competitions, the exciting playoff series on the road to the Finals, the team's determination despite many injuries and obstacles, and the wonderful, undying support of the fans.

"Our biggest success in this difficult season with all the setbacks was that nobody gave up in the club," said FCBB General Manager Marko Pesic on Sunday evening.

The entire team looks forward to thanking and celebrating the success of the season with all their fans on Monday evening at the Audi Dome.

Scoring by quarter (FCBB - BAM): 19-26, 17-23, 14-14, 34-25

FC Bayern team: John Bryant (16 points/6 rebounds), Lucca Staiger (12/4 three-pointers), Paul Zipser (11/3 three-ptrs), Bryce Taylor (11), Heiko Schaffartzik (10/5 reb), Nihad Djedovic (9/5 assists), Vladimir Stimac (7/5 reb), Vasilije Micic (6), Jan Jagla (2), Dusko Savanovic (5 reb), Robin Benzing and Anton Gavel.


BEKO BBL Playoffs, Finals
Bamberg win best-of-five series 3-2

Game 1 - FCBB 84, at BAM 73

Game 2 - at FCBB 78, BAM 80

Game 3 - FCBB 79, at BAM 91

Game 4 - at FCBB 83, BAM 73

Game 5 - FCBB 84, at BAM 88


Svetislav Pesic, Head Coach, FCBB: "Congratulations to Bamberg, but congratulations also to our team. Success in sports can always have different meanings. We played very well in the playoffs, despite the many problems that we had. Today we gave all that we could in our performance. But for us it was very difficult to win the game for various reasons. At the end we had the game in our hands, but then the traveling foul was not called, but instead a bucket and a foul was scored by the opponents. But again, I will not be a sore loser, Bamberg won, the victory was deserved. "


1st Quarter

In the final game of the BEKO Basketball Bundesliga Finals, FCBB Head Coach Svetislav Pesic chose Vasilije Micic, Bryce Taylor, Nihad Djedovic, Vladimir Stimac and John Bryant as the starting five. Bamberg got off to the better start, thanks to Daniel Theis. The German international was the most active to earn the Baskets the early 9-0 lead (3' minutes). Stimac got the defending champs on the board finally after nearly four minutes into the game, and Taylor followed with a three-pointer (5-9, 5'). Theis answered with two more treys, sandwiching a long-distance make by Bryant (8-15, 6'). Mbakwe's buckets forced Coach Pesic to finally call timeout and gather his men (12-19, 7'). Taylor tried to spark the Bayern troops with a steal and the bucket with the foul to complete a three-point play (17-23, 8'). Despite Stimac's scoring the last points in the quarter, Munich trailed 26-19 after the first ten minutes.

2nd Quarter

The Baskets continued to build their lead at the beginning of the second quarter. After Janis Strelnieks three-pointer and Bradley Wanamaker's dunk, Coach Pesic had to call timeout once again (21-33, 12'). Heiko Schaffartzik tried to get his team back with a three-pointer (24-33, 13'), but a 6-0 spurt by the hosts continued to keep Munich at bay (24-39, 14'). Bryant, Djedovic and Micic scored but the Bamberg defense continued to keep Munich from gathering any momentum (30-45, 18'). Paul Zipser got hot toward the end, sinking two three-pointers (36-47, 19') however the Baskets always had an answer and led 49-36 at halftime.

3rd Quarter

Bayern's offensive struggles continued at the beginning of the second half scoring only four points on free-throws to remain behind (40-55, 25'). Zipser signaled a momentum shift for Bayern with a three-pointer and Bamberg called timeout (45-57, 26'). Theis stepped up again, this time on defense with blocks keeping Munich from making a run back into the game. Lucca Staiger came into the game and promptly hit a three-pointer to give Bayern hope heading into the final quarter down 63-50.

4th Quarter

Ten minutes to decide a championship and the defending champs were ready to leave it all out on the floor. Taylor scored to open the quarter and Staiger from beyond-the-arc again to bring Bayern back within single digits (55-63, 31'). Darius Miller negated that run with a three-pointer and a three-point-play but Staiger was good for another three-ball (59-69, 33'). Bryant scored, and Taylor followed with a steal and layup, Munich started to make their run back into the game (65-72, 35'). Bamberg's usual suspects of Wanamaker, Mbakwe and Strelnieks built the lead back up to double-digits (67-82, 37') and all seemed lost.

However, Bayern reached down and found that championship heart and determination to make one final run. Schaffartzik and Staiger both connected from downtown (75-82, 38') and Bayern's defense confused Bamberg to force a couple of turnovers. Micic for three and Taylor drove uncontested to the hoop for a easy dunk, Bayern were within three-points with :21 seconds left! (82-85). Strelnieks could only make one free-throw and Bryant followed with a key offensive rebound off a Taylor missed three-pointer (84-86). All on the line for the title, Dawan Robinson coolly sank the deciding free-throws and ended Bayern's run as champions of the BBL.