Clutch plays secure Barons Kvartals first victory

RIGA – In what proved to be the game of the night, Barons kvartals was the more clutch time, performing when it mattered most. They outperformed Liepaja/Triobet in the final 20 seconds and ended up going home with a 75-70 victory to start their BBL campaign.


There wasn’t much separation between the two sides early on, but Barons kvartals did have a small advantage for most of the first quarter. Nevertheless, their lead peaked at 6 points before the visitors regained some ground.

The Riga side managed to open the second quarter with a strong run and soon held a solid 9-point advantage. Once again, Liepaja/Triobet came running back with a 12-0 run to jump ahead.

The two sides traded basket after basket after halftime and Barons kvartals held a single-point advantage entering the final ten minutes. A couple of consecutive baskets helped Liepaja/Triobet regain pole position, but even as time wounded down, there was no telling who would come out on top.

With 20 seconds on the clock and the score all tied up, Barons kvartals had posession and Tauras Jogela made a wide-open three-pointer to put his team up by three. The visitors had eight seconds to respond, but turned the ball over, allowing Denis Krestinin to hammer down a dunk in transition to put the final nail in the coffin.

The two Lithuanians responsible for the five final points, Denis Krestinin and Tauras Jogela, led the team throughout the game. Krestinin accounted for 20 points and 8 rebounds, while his countryman added 17 points and 9 boards. Davis Geks and Roberts Freimanis chipped in with 11 apiece, while Kristaps Dargais ended the game with 9 points.

On the losing side, it was Lateef Mcmullan taking responsibility on the offensive end. He scored 18 points, yet only made 5 of his 20 shots from the field. Ryan Cook added 13 points, while Devonta Pollard finished close to a double-double with 9 points and 9 rebounds.