CSKA Moscow beat Halcon Avenida 83-64 to remain undefeated in all competitions, but the Spanish team can return home for Game Two later this week with their heads held high after a brave performance in Russia.
Ann Wauters led five CSKA players in double figures with 21 points, while Isa Sanchez paced the Salamanca
|Silvia Dominguez had 10 points for Halcon Avenida in the loss.|
CSKA looked as if they were going to run the visitors out of the gym when they opened up a 21-7 lead with 2:27 remaining in the first quarter.
Wauters had six of her points in that strong CSKA start.
Before Gundars Vetra's team knew it, though, Avenida had stormed right back to trail 24-22, with emerging Spanish star Silvia Dominguez's three-point play capping a 15-2 run.
Jose Herndandez's team then pulled level at 30-30 on a Tracy Reid jump shot which gave her eight points.
Nicole Powell, who played for Salamanca last year, replied with a jump shot and then a three-point play, and the excellent French playmaker Edwige Lawson-Wade buried a three-pointer before Wauters added a jumper for a 10-0 run that put CSKA in control for good.
Avenida battled and managed to remain within eight points, but late in the third quarter a Rebecca Hammon three-ball put CSKA on top at 63-50 and they eventually pulled away for a 19-point triumph.
Amaya Valdemoro, CSKA's EuroBasket Women MVP, had been expected to play for the first time in the EuroLeague Women since December 19. She had recovered from a calf injury and played for CSKA at the weekend, but did not make an appearance for them on Tuesday.