European Competitions: Important wins for Ventspils, Juventus and Vytautas
17.12.2016, Povilas Baranauskas, Triobet BBL News Services
We had a lot of exciting basketball in the Triobet BBL this week, including broken all-time records and half-court game-tying buzzer-beaters, but nevertheless, let’s take a look at what’s been going on outside the Baltics. BBL.net presents you the European Competitions Weekly round-up.
Lietkabelis lost five of their six last games in the Regular Season but managed to qualify for the next round nevertheless. The round of Top 16 starts right after the New Year and the Lithuanian club is going to face three tough opponents – Khimki, Ratiopharm and FC Bayern Munich.
VTB United League
It seems that after a decent start, Kalev/Cramo have gone off track a bit. Their recent 63-90 blow-out loss against Avtodor makes it 5 losses in a row and that really doesn’t bode well for the Estonians. Their last matchup of 2016 will be a strong Khimki team, and hopefully the Tallinn side can finally turn their fortunes around.
Basketball Champions League
Anything might still happen in Group C as the fourth and seventh places in the group are separated by just one victory. That is why Ventspils’ win against Rosa Radom was so important this week. The Latvians were down by 8 at halftime but managed to dominate the third quarter and sneaked back home with a comfortable 79-63 victory.
Juventus have bounced back from two consecutive losses in Group D with a solid 10-point win against Belgian club Telenet Oostende. The Lithuanians got off to a strong start and built their lead up throughout the game to take the 81-71 home victory. They now stand at a 6-3 record and are firmly amongst the four best teams in the group. Their next opponent will be Tenerife, who are now the lone leaders of the group with 7 wins in 9 games.
FIBA Europe Cup
TU/Rock, TLU/Kalev and Siauliai have already finished their European campaigns with zero victories, but Prienu-Birstono Vytautas is still going strong. They are the highest scoring, rebounding and assisting team in the league and they continue proving that in the Second Round of the FIBA Europe Cup. The Lithuanians were dominant in the first half of their game against the Redwell Gunners, going up by 19 after the first quarter, and 30 after two. Despite letting up a bit in the second half, they rose victorious with a 91-72 victory.