Ramla Take Narrow Advantage Over BC Moscow
Shay Doron and Sherill Baker combined for 55 points as Elitzur Ramla took a minor step toward the EuroCup Women final with an 80-74 victory over BC Moscow in the home leg of their semi-final showdown.
Doron led the Israelis with 30 points and eight rebounds and Baker poured in 25 points as Eli Rabi's team travels to Russia for the return leg on 12 March.
No other Elitzur player scored more than six points - but the Doron and Baker attack was enough, especially as Rabi's team made all 24 of their free throws.
Moscow out-rebounded the Israelis 47-35 but committed 19 turnovers. And coach Alexander Vasin did not get enough help for his star Monique Currie, who collected 30 points, 12 rebounds and four steals. Plenette Pierson did score 10 points in eight minutes but it was not enough.
Doron scored four points as the hosts jumped ahead 6-2. But Currie's six points pushed Moscow up 12-8. Doron knocked down a triple and two foul shots as Elitzur came back to grab a 19-14 cushion only to see Pierson's three-ball give the Russians a 20-19 lead after one period.
The Israelis started the second on fire as Tali Noy and Inna Gourevitch hit from downtown and Doron poured in five points in a 19-5 run to begin the quarter and open a 38-25 gap.
The hosts tallied the first four points of the second half as the lead grew to 15 points - 44-29. Back-to-back baskets by Baker kept Elitzur ahead 52-39 midway through the third. But Currie scored three baskets and Ekaterina Savelyeva drained a long-ball as BC Moscow closed the quarter on a 14-4 run to close within 56-53 going into the fourth.
Rabi's team however shut down Moscow in the final period with 10-2 surge for an 11-point gap - 66-55. Currie continued her strong game with a three-ball and back-to-back baskets by Savelyeva had Moscow within 70-64.
Noy hit her second trey of the game and the lead was back up to 75-64 with less than three minutes to play. But the guests were able to close within six points and have a decent chance in the return leg.