Avenida Back In The Mix

25. Monique Currie (Municipal Targoviste)
Monique Currie had an immediate impact on the Avenida outfit

There was EuroLeague Women debut delight for new Perfumerias Avenida head coach Victor Lapena as his players delivered the goods with a sparkling 82-54 win against visiting USO Mondeville to keep their play-off dreams alive in Group C.

With their prospects fading badly ahead of the mid-season break, the Spanish club used the down-time to make some fundamental changes, including both the installation of Lapena and cutting their losses on last summers' marquee signing Nicole Powell.

And, those decisions paid instant dividends as a great start to the game set the tone for a vibrant and energetic display.

Avenida powered their way into a decisive early lead as a basket by Lithuanian forward Egle Sulciute put them 17-5 in front.

Whilst a 10-2 run by USO Mondeville in the second quarter briefly threatened to get them back into the contest when they reduced the arrears to eight points but it was to be as good as it would get.

Already 39-28 to the good at the midway point of the game, the confidence was flooding through Avenida and they stepped on the accelerator even more with a 22-8 third period and a 6-0 start to the last quarter to really cement the victory.

Monique Currie justified the decision to draft her in as a replacement for Powell with an excellent 22 points to get the Salamanca faithful on their feet - as did 11 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists from Le'Coe Willingham.

However it was a thoroughly forgettable night for the visitors, since despite the arrival of Noel Kuin and the return of Naignouma Coulibay from injury, USO Mondeville managed to register their worst night of the season so far.

Ingrid Tanqueray and Laetitia Kamba did perform reasonably well, combining for 27 points and 13 rebounds.



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