Maroussi Athens became the fourth and final team to qualify for this season’s FEL Final Four after an impressive performance in the deciding game of their series with Aris Thessaloniki.
Maroussi, who currently lead the Greek League, had a memorable first half in which they scored 57 points (to 34 by Aris) to assume full control of the contest.
Aris welcomed back leading scorer Nestoras Kommatos from injury, but his presence was not enough to give Aris the win they so desperately sought.
The x-factor for Maroussi was guard Prodromos Nikolaidi. The 25-year old had not been a major contributor for his team this season, but he exploded for a season high 23 points and 8 rebounds against Aris.
Maroussi’s strong first half meant that Aris were forced to chase the game for the remaining 20 minutes. They managed to cut the lead to 18-points going into the 4th and scored an impressive 38 total points in the final quarter. Nonetheless, time was not on their side and Maroussi had done enough in the first half to secure the victory.
Other than Nikolaidi, Roderick Blakney contributed 16 points for Maroussi.
Toby Bailey scored 26 points for Aris and Smush Parker added 17, although he struggled with his shooting (4/15).