|Ronalds Zakis topped scoring for BK Ventspils with 21 points|
BK Ventspils overpowered Sodertalje to take a 72-63 win and move to 2-0 in Group C of EuroChallenge.
Sodertalje enjoyed only a couple of brief runs in the game - keeping them in touch with their hosts but in the end only enough to prevent a blow-out as Ventspils dominated most of the way.
The hosts had gone 15-7 up in the early going before John Roberson's three-pointer sparked an 8-0 response from Sodertalje that temporarily edged them in front, but that minor rebellion was crushed by a 9-0 Ventspils run that spanned the first and second quarter, with Davis Lejasmeiers' jump-shot making it 24-16.
The hosts were beginning to stretch their lead as half-time neared, with Ronalds Zakis going on a personal 6-0 burst that made it 36-27.
Again Sodertalje had a response, scoring 10 unanswered points - including threes from Toni Bizaca and Roberson to snatch a 37-36 lead early in the third period before Ventspils were able to restore normal service.
When Sandis Valters nailed a three to make it 40-39, the lead was theirs for good and they gradually stretched it out, going 51-42 up on a pair of free throws from Artjoms Butjankovs with 1:20 left in the third period.
A Valters three midway through the final stanza made it 64-52 and this time there would be no Sodertalje rally.
Zakis led Ventspils with 21 points while Maris Gulbis added 11.
Roberson finished with 22 for Sodertalje, with Bizaca collecting 18.
BC Sodertalje Player Assane Sene
"This game was a lesson for us - we are going to learn from it. I want to take one blame on me for cheap fouls that later cost a lot to my team, because when I got five fouls and I was not there on the court when my team needed me there."
BC Sodertalje Head Coach Vedran Bosnic
"We respected Ventspils too much in this game and they felt too comfortable all the game. We also had big problems on the inside with rebounds - they beat us on rebounds. That all cost us the game. We will prepare ourselves for the game on our home court."
BK Ventspils Player Ronalds Zakis
"I cannot say about myself, but I can say about our team - we are always preparing hard for every game. Coach said we have to be aggressive in defence and offence and we tried to do it at our best. I don't know if it was my best game, I was just doing what my coach said."
BK Ventspils Head Coach Roberts Stelmahers
"I can say that the game was tough. I know that we have to prepare and respect Sodertalje as opponents, because they play an intellectual game and they know how to use their strongest bits and hide their weaknesses. Before the game I told my guys that we have to show that we want to win from the beginning and play aggressive."