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Losing streak

Bayern beaten in Berlin

FC Bayern Basketball lost their second consecutive Basketball Bundesliga game, their fourth overall, after losing 90-74 to ALBA Berlin in the capital city.

ALBA kept their perfect record to start the league season in front of 14,052 fans thanks to 20 turnovers by Munich, 13 of them in the first half that aided in the fast start by the hosts. ALBA's big men controlled the glass with a 39-29 rebounding advantage that led to many second chances and thus key buckets.

Munich were led by K.C. Rivers' 17 points but his night was cut short after he was disqualified midway in the fourth quarter, after earning his fifth foul. The Reds played hurt as Dusko Savanovic was out with a knee injury, as well as Maxi Kleber. Alex Renfroe did not practice after the Euroleague game against Red Star Belgrade on Thursday after suffering an injury and thus played in pain. Vasilije Micic played his first minutes of the season.

Bayern return home to face Fenerbahce and hope to avenge their first Euroleague loss back in October in Istanbul. Tip-off of the Group A matchup is at 20:45 CET. Munich will hit the road after that, traveling to Bremerhaven and Moscow before hosting the Crailsheim Merlins on November 29th in the Audi Dome.

Scoring by quarter (FCBB - ALBA): 15-24, 23-25, 15-17, 21-24

FC Bayern Team: K.C. Rivers (17 points/3 three-pointers), Nihad Djedovic (12), Bryce Taylor (10), Deon Thompson (9), Alex Renfroe (9), Paul Zipser (7), Andreas Seiferth (4), Anton Gavel (3), Vasilije Micic (2), Daniel Mayr (1), John Bryant. DNP: Dejan Kovacevic.

POSTGAME REACTION:

Svetislav Pesic, Head Coach, FCBB: "Congratulations to ALBA, that was a well-deserved victory. They were determined from the beginning, very physical and performed well, especially on the offensive rebounds.  They didn't shoot better than us, but they were playing better, and the offensive rebounds helped their confidence. We were not good nor prepared for what we are known to do. We were missing the players and the body language to respond. That's why we didn't box out better, which I believe is what decided the game. Dusko (Savanovic) was out, and Alex (Renfroe)'s performance level was missing." 

Alex Renfroe, Guard, FCBB: "Berlin earned the victory. This was frustrating for us. We needed this win, but we didn't deliver. That was not enough to challenge a physical team like Berlin.

Sasa Obradovic, Head Coach, ALBA Berlin: "I am very happy about the good team performance today. Everyone contributed their part in the win and a lot of energy game from the bench. For example Jonas Wohlfarth-Bottermann, he was very productive today. We are continuing to playing better together. I think this win will give us the confidence for the tough games coming up in the next weeks. Bayern without (Dusko) Savanovic is not the same team, but we improved and we sent a message in front of our fans with this performance."

GAME HIGHLIGHTS:

1st Quarter

FCBB Head Coach Svetislav Pesic called on Anton Gavel, K.C. Rivers, Nihad Djedovic, Deon Thompson, and John Bryant for this tough road game against an undefeated ALBA Berlin. Bayern's troubles appeared early that set the tone for the rest of the afternoon. Kresimir Loncar opened the scoring for ALBA grabbing the offensive rebound and the bucket. After a turnover by Bryant, Mitchell Watt scored to make it 6-0. After Dragan Milosavljevic missed his three-point attempt, he grabbed the loose ball and scored from a bit closer, Coach Pesic was not happy with the start and called timeout (0-8, 3' minutes).

After the break, Rivers sparked the Munich attack with a pair of treys around a Will Cherry three-pointer for the hosts (6-11, 4'). Watt scored a couple of more times to increase ALBA's lead to 15-7 (6'). Thompson scored twice, including a dunk, to keep Bayern close (11-17, 8'). Munich could only muster free-throws the rest of the period while a long-distance bomb from Jordan Taylor and a buzzer-beating three-pointer from Alex King made sure ALBA led 24-15 after the first ten minutes.

2nd Quarter

Milosavljevic extended Berlin's lead to 27-15 after a three-pointer, but Bryce Taylor converted a three-point play and Rivers followed with a three-pointer, ALBA called timeout (21-27, 3'). Bayern's troubles to rebound the ball continued to give ALBA second chances, Loncar grabbed Elmedin Kikanovic's miss and gave it right back to the Bosnian who scored to maintain the 10-point lead over Munich (23-33, 14'). Munich stayed close, thanks to Djedovic who stole the ball and scored (27-33, 15'), but Niels Giffey scored twice including a three-pointer to get the lead back up to 10 points (30-40, 17'). The young German international finished the 12-4 run with yet another three, and ALBA were threatening to run away with the game (32-47, 19') but Renfroe and B. Taylor both connected from beyond-the-arc to get Bayern within 49-38 at halftime.

3rd Quarter

Berlin drew first blood again at the beginning of the quarter, but Rivers converted a free-throw after an ALBA technical foul and Gavel sank a three-pointer to bring Bayern back to within ten points (42-52, 23'). Renfroe and Loncar exchanged trips to the charity stripe and each made four free-throws (46-58, 26'). Munich stayed around but could never come within striking distance thanks to both Jonas Wohlfarth-Bottermann and Kikanovic each completing a three-point play and ALBA led 66-53 before the final quarter.

4th Quarter

Kikanovic took advantage of Bayern's weak play in the paint by notching a double-double in the game (16 points and 10 rebounds) and perhaps put the game away right at the start of the fourth quarter. Multiple second chances by ALBA were finally finished by Kikanovic as Munich failed to clear the boards. After Djedovic turned it over, Kikanovic scored again and Berlin were now comfortably in the lead (53-70, 32'). Rivers started a run with a layin and one to try to get the Reds back into it, and Andreas Seiferth's consecutive scores forced ALBA Head Coach Sasa Obradovic to call timeout (62-74, 34').

Immediately at the restart, Rivers was called for an offensive foul and his complaining resulted in a technical foul, his fifth personal, and he had to sit, his night ended with 17 points. Three-pointers by Milosavljevic and J. Taylor iced the game soon after (67-86, 38'). Munich lose their second consecutive BBL road game on a Sunday and will look to break their current four-game losing streak in all competitions when they host Fenerbahce Istanbul in Euroleague action on Thursday.

UPCOMING GAMES:

Turkish Airlines Euroleague, Regular Season, Round 6:
Thursday, 19th November, 20:45 CET, Audi Dome
FC Bayern Basketball vs Fenerbahce Istanbul

Beko BBL, Gameday 9:
Sunday, 22nd November, 15:00 CET
FC Bayern Basketball at Eisbären Bremerhaven

Turkish Airlines Euroleague, Regular Season, Round 7:
Thursday, 26th November, 18:00 CET
FC Bayern Basketball at Khimki Moscow

Beko BBL, Gameday 10:
Sunday, 29th November, 17:00 CET, Audi Dome
FC Bayern Basketball vs Crailsheim Merlins