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Red Sorcery

Bayern offense casts spell on Merlins

After a losing streak and tough games on the road, FC Bayern Basketball enjoyed a dominating performance Sunday at the Audi Dome, defeating the Crailsheim Merlins 106-59 and extend their current win streak.

Bayern were clearly riding the momentum from Thursday's huge Euroleague win in Moscow against BC Khimki. They came out with the offense firing on all cylinders to bury the Merlins with three-pointers to build the insurmountable lead. Munich sank eight three-pointers in the first half and made their first 22 free-throws as if they were the magicians on the court, building a 30-point lead during the first half and crusing to the win.

All 12 players saw action, six of them hit double figures, lead by K.C. Rivers 16 points, along with Deon Thompson, Paul Zipser and John Bryant each adding 13 points.

Two tough road tests await the Reds. On Friday, December 4th, Bayern travel to Strasbourg to take on SIG Basket at 20:30 CET. Next Sunday, it's off to Bamberg to face defending BBL Champs Brose Baskets. Munich return home on Friday, December 11th to host defending Euroleague champs Real Madrid. Tip-off is set for 20:00 CET.

Scoring by quarter (FCBB - CRAI): 33-11, 25-18, 26-14, 22-16

FC Bayern Team: K.C. Rivers (16 points/3-for-4 three-pointers), Deon Thompson (13), John Bryant (13/3-for-5 3ptrs), Paul Zipser (13), Bryce Taylor (10/6 rebounds), Anton Gavel (9/6 assists), Vasilije Micic (8/8 ast), Dusko Savanovic (7), Andreas Seiferth (3), Daniel Mayr (2) and Dejan Kovacevic

POSTGAME REACTION:

Svetislav Pesic, Head Coach, FCBB: "We had the right attitude from the beginning. Particularly on defense, we adjusted our coverage when needed. We defended aggressively and converted them into points. Everyone saw that the win in Moscow gave us self-confidence. I want to congratulate my team for the focused performance. We can be satisfied today."

Ingo Enskat, Head Coach, Crailsheim: "We fell apart completely right from the start in the first half. We were too quick to hang our heads. I had expected that we establish ourselves from the start. At the moment, we are far away from competing against an opponent like Munich. We have to build our confidence back up during practice. A loss like this one today is very disappointing, but for Bayern, this was a win well-deserved."

1st Quarter

Alex Renfroe was in a need of a break, so FCBB Head Coach Svetislav Pesic inserted Anton Gavel into the starting lineup with Nihad Djedovic, Bryce Taylor, Dusko Savanovic, and Deon Thompson. Gavel scored a layup to open the scoring, Savanovic hit a jumper from the baseline and followed that up with a three-pointer, quickly a timeout was called by Crailsheim (10-2, 3' minutes). Taylor shifted the offense into the next gear, first a clean dunk as he cut through the lane and received a bounce pass from Savanovic (16-4, 6'). And as the shot clock ticked away, Taylor swished a three-pointer at the buzzer (19-6, 7'). John Bryant followed with another trey, Merlins were forced to call another timeout (22-8, 8'). K.C. Rivers finished the quarter in a flurry, connecting from beyond-the-arc and getting fouled to complete the four-point-play. Rivers drove easily through the defense for a score and then made Bayern's fifth three-pointer in the quarter and the 33-11 lead.

2nd Quarter

Munich's run continued into the beginning of the second quarter. Rivers and Taylor each for three to highlight the combined 19-0 run between quarters (43-11, 14'). Bayern's defense helped force the action, exemplified by Djedovic intercepting the Crailsheim pass for the steal, a fastbreak and the easy layin to extend the lead to 45-14. Taylor hammered home a dunk to give notice that the rout was on (51-20, 18') and Gavel hit a three-pointer to finish the scoring for the Reds. Pesic's men could finally enjoy a well-deserved breather at halftime, up 58-29.

3rd Quarter

Bayern kept the pedal to the metal starting the second half, Rivers pushed the ball up the court, to Gavel who passed it off to Zipser, finishing the transition basket. Gavel stole the ball which led to an easy layup for him (62-29, 22'). Thompson realized that is an easy way to score, also stole the ball and took it to the house for the fastbreak dunk (74-35, 28'). The Merlins showed signs of life as they hit a couple of three-pointers, but this time it was Bryant who ended the quarter with a flourish, nailing consecutive three-pointers, the last one as he was knocked back to the floor. Crailsheim could warm up their bus, Bayern led 84-43 heading into the final ten minutes.

4th Quarter

With the game in hand, Munich could finally take their foot off the accelerator, and the Merlins' offense finally appeared, hitting a set of three-pointers, but Thompson put an end to that run with a steal and a reverse jam (91-52, 34'). Zipser's three-pointer got Bayern back up to forty points (94-54, 35'). Bayern's accuracy was also apparent from the free-throw line, Vasilije Micic got the score up to 100 on "I Love the 90's" Night (100-56, 37'). But just like the Venga Boys who performed at halftime, Zipser went boom with a dunk to finish off an alley-oop from Micic. Bayern win their third game in a row easily, 106-59 against the Merlins.

UPCOMING GAMES:

Turkish Airlines Euroleague, Regular Season, Round 8:
Friday, 4th December, 20:30 CET
FC Bayern Basketball at SIG Basket Strasbourg

Beko BBL, Gameday 11:
Sunday, 6th December, 17:00 CET
FC Bayern Basketball at Brose Baskets

Turkish Airlines Euroleague, Regular Season, Round 9:
Friday, 11th December, 20:00 CET, Audi Dome
FC Bayern Basketball vs Real Madrid Baloncesto