Fenerbahce Edge Battling Schio


Penny Taylor had 18 of her game-high 23 points in the first half to fire Fenerbahce into a big lead, but the Turkish giants had to survive a terrific comeback by Beretta-Famila to win in the EuroLeague Women on Thursday evening.

Trailing by 17 late in the second quarter and down 44-29 at half-time, Schio pulled to within three points in the fourth quarter but Fener scraped a 70-65 triumph in Italy.

Fenerbahce, who are coached by George Dikeoulakos, won for the second time in as many games in Group B while Schio slumped to 1-2.

The visitors appeared to blow the game wide open in the first quarter.

With the game tied, the Istanbul outfit went on a 21-5 run to go on top, 27-11.

Taylor, the MVP of the 2006 FIBA World Championship for Women after leading Australia to gold, hit two shots from the arc and scored 10 points overall in the spurt that silenced the Italian crowd.

Schio had to play catch-up the rest of the way.

Fenerbahce had a commanding lead at the break and extended it to 17 points nearly four minutes into the third quarter.

Rather than Fener pulling away, though, Schio began to reel them back in.

Down 53-36, Schio poured in eight straight points, including a shot from long range by Raffaella Masciadri and a three-point play by Chiara Pastore.

Taylor answered with a three-point play but Liron Cohen scored Schio's last five points of the period with her three-ball closing the gap to 58-49 with a quarter still to go.

Maja Erkic and Aija Brumermane had baskets to start the fourth period and suddenly Fenerbahce found themselves on top by just five points.

Schio drew to within 61-57 when Laura Macchi buried a jump shot and Janel McCarville split a pair of free-throws to cut the Fener advantage to three.

The hosts had a golden opportunity to get even closer or pull level after Fenerbahce star Angel McCoughtry's pass went out of bounds, but the Turkish team came up with a steal that led to a Nevriye Yilmaz lay-up.

Three times Schio managed to get to within four points, but Fenerbahce made seven of eight free-throws over the last 2:24 and held on for victory.

McCoughtry had 14 points and Zane Tamane 12 for Fenerbahce.

Macchi had 13 points, Cohen 12 and Brumermane and Masciadri 10 apiece.



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