When Port of Parnu rose back up from a double-digit deficit in the game against Liepaja/Triobet, there was one man you could point the fingers at more than the others. Mihkel Kirves put up an astonishing display, and proved to be worthy of the Weekly MVP honors, as his side took a big home win.
With a 30-point swing in the game, you could tell things were going extremely well for Port of Parnu after the first quarter ended, and the same could be said about Mihkel Kirves, as he got nearly everything to fall. The forward scored 28 points shooting 10-for-14 from the field and added 6 free throw makes. He was also impressive under the boards, where he collected 13 rebounds. Kirves also dished out 2 assists and turned the ball over three times.
You couldn‘t say Kirves is having anything close to a phenomenal season, but his play has improved greatly after the New Year. Having averaged 5.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.0 assists in his first three games, he picked it up and is averaging 22.5 points, 13.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals in the two games in January. Perhaps we‘ve got our newest monthly MVP brewing here?
Parnu have struggled so far this season, winning just three-of-eleven games, but if the 20-year-old continues putting up numbers like these, who knows what might happen!
RAPLA – Thomas van der Mars had yet another monstrous game but that wasn’t enough for the hosts to sneak out a victory, as Barons kvartals defeated AVIS Rapla 77-66 on Friday evening.
It was a nip-and-tuck affair from the earliest of stages in the game, as neither side were willing to give up any ground from the moment they hit the court. A quarter in, Barons kvartals held a slight advantage, leading by two.
The visitors managed to make some room for themselves at the start of the second period, as they improved their lead to 9 points. Nevertheless, AVIS Rapla managed to regain momentum and came back to reduce the deficit.
Barons kvartals managed to up the lead once again in the second half, only for it to be dissolved with a couple of baskets. Despite that, they still held an important 5 point margin over Rapla entering the final quarter.
The Latvians managed to get things going well in the final period, as they finally pushed the margin to double-digits. They went on to win by eleven.
Davis Geks was the top scorer for Barons kvartals, as he had 19 points, while Denis Krestinin chipped in with a solid double-double of 13 points and 13 rebounds. Davis Zonne added 12 points, while Kristaps Mediss ended the game with 11 points, despite going 0-for-6 from downtown.
Van der Mars was left scoreless in the final quarter, but still put up an outstanding scoreline for Rapla, as he worked hard on the offensive glass to collect 22 points and 16 rebounds (10 offensive). Rasham Suarez added 14 points, while Domen Bratoz chipped in with 12.
JURMALA - The home side didn't have too much trouble handling Barsy, as Jurmala/Fenikss rose to a huge victory against the Kazakhs, 88-52, denying the visitors their fiat victory.
It was not a beginning Barsy hoped for, as the first quarter was started terribly. 10 minutes into the game, the visitors were already down by 11 points, 23-12.
Barsy's woes didn't stop there though, as Jurmala's lead expanded to 29 not even halfway through the game. It was a dominant second quarter from the home side, as they won the period 28-10.
The game evened out after the break, but it was already a margin too big to overcome. The visitors reduced the deficit by a couple points, but were still being dominated.
There was a big separation between the two sides entering the final quarter, and it wasn't a deficit Barsy could overcome. They crashed and burned, as Jurmala/Fenikss improved their lead to 36 in the final fourth.
Arturs Duselis was the top scorer for Jurmala, as he dropped 19. Edmunds Elksnis chipped in with 15. Ugis pinete added 14, while Edgar's Jeromanovs and Viktors Ilkins added 10 points each, as the latter also contributed 11 rebounds.
Trevin Parks was the only player to enter double-digits, as he scored 19 points for Barsy.
PARNU – It was a terrific turnaround after a poor start for Port of Parnu, as they swiped away a 12-point deficit to come back and win it comfortably against Liepaja/Triobet, taking the big 93-75 W.
Liepaja/Triobet had it all falling for them in the first quarter, as they got ahead with terrific play on the offensive end. Just ten minutes in, it was already a double-digit advantage for them, 17-29.
Nevertheless, Port of Parnu managed to get a grip of themselves and raced back in the second quarter, cutting the deficit to just seven. Their comeback was alive and striving in the start of the second half as well, as the home side quickly tied the game up.
The third quarter was as close as it gets, as the leading side changed back and forth. However, it was apparent, that Parnu finally got in the groove and were enjoying their basketball. With ten minutes remaining on the clock, the Estonians were already up by eight, having double-upped their opponents in the third quarter, 30-15.
Liepaja‘s struggles continued in the final fourth, as the home side managed to push the margin to double-digits with a series of successful plays, forcing a timeout for the Latvians. Silly mistakes and rushed shots didn‘t help their cause, as Port of Parnu had everything going for them.
Halfway through the quarter there was already 17 points between the two sides and it looked like game over for Liepaja. They did manage to cut the deficit to 10, but that was as close as they got in the fourth quarter.
RAKVERE – Nowhere near a close game, as Pieno Zvaigzdes celebrated a blow-out victory in Rakvere, defeating Tarvas/Palmse Metall 77-112. Pieno Zvaigzdes currently hold the league‘s best record with a 10-1 standing.
There wasn‘t too much separation between the two sides in the first quarter, as the Estonians held their end of the bargain in the first quarter, staying very much in hte game.
However, any of the hustle and fight Tarvas showed in the first quarter was gone in the second, as the Lithuanians got off to a huge run, winning the ten minute stretch 33-14. With 23 points between them, it seemed to be a done deal already.
Pieno Zvaigzdes continued piling on the points, as the margin reached 30 points in the third quarter. The final quarter was merely a formality and it was the Lithuanian club celebrating their fifth consecutive victory.
Nearly all players got into double-digit scoring for Pieno Zvaigzdes, as Karolis Babkauskas was more interested in getting his teammates involved. The point guard had 8 points and 9 assists. Evaldas Zabas, however, had an excellent night shooting the ball, as he tallied 26 points. Nikita Balashov added 16 points and 8 boards to the tally, while Egidijus Dimsa ended up with 15 and 9. Andriy Agafonov had 14 points, while Derrick Low, Justas Tamulis and Steponas Babrauskas all had 11 points apiece.
Justin Baker was a rare bright spot for Tarvas/Palmse Metall, as he scored 28 points and tore down 11 rebounds. Oliver Metsalu and Timo Eichfuss chipped in with 12 points each.
RAPLA – AVIS Rapla secured a comfortable victory as they took on Latvian visitors Liepaja/Triobet on Tuesday evening. The Latvians got ahead at the end of the first quarter, but from then on, it was all Rapla, as the Estonians managed to turn the table and won 83-71.
There wasn’t much to separate the two sides for the lion’s share of the first quarter, but Liepaja/Triobet managed to win the final 1:10 spread 7-0 and jumped ahead 25-19 after the first period.
Nevertheless, that lead didn’t stand for long, as the hosts were quick to regain ground and halfway through the second period, it was already them in front, leading 37-31. While the margin had reached eight points, the teams ended the half with just three points between them.
Right as the second half started, it began raining threes – AVIS Rapla nailed three consecutive long-range bombs in under a minute and pushed the lead to double-digits. They continued their dominant play and took total control of the game, as the lead rose to 16.
While the teams started off the final quarter with a 13-point spread, Liepaja/Triobet managed to bring back some intrigue into the game, cutting the deficit in half to just six with four minutes remaining. Nevertheless, the visitors turned the ball just too many times in the final minutes to stay competitive and lost by 12.
Rasham Suarez was a key to Rapla’s win, as he scored 21 points and chipped in with 8 rebounds. Kristjan Voolaid added 16 points, while Thomas van der Mars secured yet another double-double, scoring 14 and adding 15 rebounds to the tally. Sven Kaldre and Domen Bratoz were also effective, scoring 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Lateef Mcmullan had a big night scoring-wise, as he put up 26 points for Liepaja/Triobet, but he didn’t get too much help from his teammates, as Davis Rozitis was the only other Liepaja player in double-digit scoring with 10 points to his name. Carl Anthony Montgomery added 9 points and 7 rebounds to the tally.
TALLINN – The second game in a row finished in a similar fashion, as Pieno Zvaigzdes followed Nevezis’ footsteps and blew out their opponents. The Lithuanian side destroyed TTU 106-71 and improved to the best record in the league, 8-1.
The game was pretty much taken care of in the first quarter already, as Pieno Zvaigzdes ran off to a 19-point lead eight minutes into the game with a 25-6 start. The lead was slightly cut back in the next couple minutes, but the Lithuanians still enjoyed a comfortable lead.
Things didn’t get much better in the second period. Although, TTU were probably happy they didn’t get that much worse, seeing the way they played. Two quarters in, it was a one-sided affair, as Pieno Zvaigzdes looked down with a 20-point advantage, 53-33.
TTU showed some signs of life after the halftime break, as they slowly closed in on their opponents. Nevertheless, the hosts couldn’t get closer than 15 points, and Pieno Zvaigzdes used a couple of successful possessions to bring the lead back to 19 before the final quarter.
While it already seemed all said and done, the visitors managed to pile on some more points to their lead, as the margin reached game-high 35 points with the final shot.
Nikita Balashov had a terrific game for Pieno Zvaigzdes, scoring 22 points and tearing down 6 rebounds. Egidijus Dimsa added another 16 points to the tally, while Karolis Babkauskas ended the game with 15 points, 5 rebounds and 6 assists. Evaldas Zabas added 13 points, while Osvaldas Olisevicius ended up scoring 12. Justas Tamulis had 11 points, while Andriy Agafonov added 10.
Kiur Akenparg was the leader in scoring for TTU with 15 points in his account. Nikola Vujovic added 13, while Toomas Raadik had 12 on near-perfect shooting. Joonas Jarvelainen had a rough time finding ways to the basket, but still ended up scoring 11 points.
KEDAINIAI – It was another big loss for Barsy Atyrau, as they fell at the hands of Nevezis, following a heavy beating in the first half. The 103-73 win was Nevezis 7th overall, as they improved to a 7-3 record.
The game went back and forth for the five opening minutes, as it was a stalemate at 9-9 halfway into the first quarter. However, the Lithuanians managed to perform in the second part of the period and amassed a nine point lead after ten minutes of play.
It didn‘t take long for Nevezis to cement their lead, as they managed to stop the Kazakhs‘ offense and burst ahead in the latter part of the half. A 21-3 run pushed the margin to 28 points and sent the visitors to a knock-out.
There wasn‘t too much to talk about in the second half, as the two sides played some pretty level basketball. While the shots weren‘t falling for either side in the third period, they had more than their fair share of makes in the final fourth. Either way, the final buzzer signaled a lopsided victory for Nevezis and Barsy’s seventh straight loss.
Seven players reached double-digit scoring for Nevezis, as Toni Prostran led the way with 16. He also accounted for a number of his teammates’ points, as he dished out 10 assists. The trio of Karolis Petrukonis, Ignas Vaitkus (7 assists and 5 rebounds) and Ivan Smiljanic all had 14 points, while the latter also contributed 9 rebounds. Simonas Kymantas added 11 points, while Vaidotas Volkus and Arminas Kelmelis ended the game with 10.
On the other side, it was Pavel Ilin guiding the way, as he scored 17 points. Mikhail Yevstigneev added 11 points, while Trevin Parks and Vadim Matyukevich accounted for 10 points each.
There were just four games played this week in the Triobet BBL, but there's still plenty of action to cover. We‘re going to round it all up for you in our traditional Triobet BBL Weekly Review: Volume 12.
MVP. Before this week, the Triobet BBL Player of the Week award was won by four different players from Latvia, two from Lithuania and one from Netherlands (three times), USA and Ukraine each. We are happy to announce that we‘ve now got an Estonian Weekly MVP winner as well, as Sten Olmre raked in the first award of 2017. The TTU guard put up 27 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists, leading his team to a surprising victory against Jekabpils.
UNFINISHED COMEBACK. TTU played 35 minutes of top-notch basketball against Jekabpils, as they mounted an 18-point lead. However, their coach couldn‘t be too happy about the last 5 minutes, as what looked to be a blow-out nearly turned into an incredible collapse. Jekabpils put up a tremendous run and managed to cut the deficit to just two points. Nevertheless, cold-blooded free-throw shooting bailed out the Estonians and they went on to win, 86-82.
DOUBLE-DOUBLE. Thomas van der Mars‘ play was once again the highlight of AVIS Rapla‘s victory, as he was the bedrock on both ends of the court. The Dutchman contributed another double-double, scoring 16 points and tearing down 10 rebounds, while his club defeated Jurmala/Fenikss. This makes it van der Mars‘ 7th double-double in nine games and he’s heads and shoulders above anyone else in this category.
FROM HERO TO ZERO. December Triobet BBL MVP Edgars Jeromanovs didn’t have the best of starts to the year in his game against Rapla, as he made just one-of-eight of his field goals and finished the game with 4 points. Although he dished out 6 assists, Jurmala/Fenikss really missed his sharp shooting from beyond the arc.
END TO END. Valmiera/ORDO didn‘t have it too tough when they faced off against Ogre/Kumho Tyre. The hosts took the lead early and held on to it until the very end. The game’s highest margin was 18 points, but Ogre managed to dwindle it down to 10 before the game ended.
STREAKS. Valmiera’s latest victory made it six wins in a row for them in Group B, but they’re not the only one’s going on a winning streak. Barons kvartals are looking just as good in Group A, although their streak is currently five W’s. The two Latvian clubs are in pole positions of their respective groups, although Pieno Zvaigzdes will be looking to retake the reigns of Group B as soon as possible.
Basketball returns all around Europe after a short festive break. BBL.net presents you a weekly round-up of how the clubs that will be joining us at the start of the Triobet BBL Playoffs have been doing in other European competitions.
Lietkabelis started out the round of Top 16 of the 7Days EuroCup with a loss. It was a close game against one of the favorites of the tournament, Khimki, but the Lithuanians just couldn’t stop Alexey Shved, who scored 21 points, while also adding 7 rebounds and 7 assists. Final score: 80-88.
VTB United League
Kalev/Cramo haven’t done enough to return to winning ways, as they suffered yet another defeat. VEF got loose in the second quarter and kept their cool until the end, raking in a 66-78 victory. They now stand at a 5-5 record, while the Estonians dropped to 2-9, as their losing streak extended to seven.
Basketball Champions League
Ventspils’ New Year’s celebrations were extended in Varese, as they played some terrific basketball on a hostile turf. A great second quarter put them on route to a double-digit lead which they managed to hold on to until the very end, winning for the sixth time on eleven tries in Group C. The 88-82 victory against Varese moved them to the fourth position in the group with three games remaining.
Utena was also given another chance to celebrate, as their town heroes continued their successful run in Europe. Juventus defeated the colorful Mega Leks 85-78 and improved their record to 7-4. The Lithuanians are aiming high in Group B, as they threaten all three teams that are currently above them.
FIBA Europe Cup
Prienu-Birstono Vytautas suffered their first defeat in the second round of the FIBA Europe Cup, as fell far wide of Telekom Baskets Bonn. The Germans got in front in the first quarter, going up by eight, and then put the game to bed right after the break, as the margin increased to 17. The final score had blow-out written all over it, 70-89.