|22 November 2012|
|Jawad Williams came up big for Paris Levallois, recording 25 points and 10 rebounds on the road|
Only two teams, both of them German, still march on unbeaten in EuroChallenge groups E-through-H after the conclusion of the third day of action in the Regular Season.
FIBA Europe Okapi Aalstar seemed to be well on track for a third consecutive win in the Regular Season on Tuesday, when they took an early 24-13 lead over Paris Levallois and then further increased the gap to 45-31 at half-time.
The Parisians however staged an impressive comeback in the third that erased the hosts' advantage and tied the scores at 53 going into the fourth quarter.
The Belgian side reacted at the start of the final frame and muscled their way back with a 17-8 run to regain a five-point lead, 70-65, with 4:34 left on the clock.
And then they stopped.
A Sean May put-back sparked a 10-0 run within the next minute and a half, which brought the French side on top, 70-75.
They held onto the lead until the end to ride out 86-76 winners.
Jawad Williams led Paris to this valuable victory on the road with a double-double of 25 points and 10 rebounds.
Shooting guard Antoine Diot added 21 points, May had 19, while Andrew Albicy dished out six assists.
Meanwhile, in a game of runs in Romania, Belfius Mons-Hainaut were a little more consistent and a bit more calm than BCMU Pitesti in the deciding final three minutes.
It was just enough for the Belgian side to clinch an important road victory, 78-73, that left their hosts bottom of the group with no wins to their name.
Joshua Bostic led all Mons scorers with 16 points while big man Brian Qvale was dominant on the glass with 10 rebounds and three blocks.
Group E Standings: Okapi Aalstar 2-1; Paris Levallois 2-1; Belfius Mons-Hainaut 2-1; BCMU Pitesti 0-3
After the first three weeks in the Regular Season, EWE Baskets Oldenburg are the highest-scoring team and have the second-best defence in the competition.
On Wednesday night they were playing at home and were very keen to show why they excel at both ends of the floor, with Lami-Véd Körmend on the receiving end of this exhibition.
The German outfit defeated their Hungarian opponents comfortably, 95-64, with every player in the winning squad getting playing time and eleven of them writing their name on the score-sheet.
Rickey Paulding and Robin Smeulders had 15 points apiece for Oldenburg.
On Tuesday, Szolnoki Olaj had taken a giant step in the battle for a top-two finish by prevailing 93-80 over BC Timisoara on the road.
The free-flowing pace of the game suited both teams, but the Hungarian side always looked a bit more comfortable and in control of proceedings.
Szolnoki took a 51-41 advantage into the locker rooms at the interval and managed to withstand the hosts' charge in the third quarter and confidently preserve their lead in the final stanza.
Veteran shooting guard Balázs Simon led all Szolnoki scorers with 20 points and had plenty of support from Latvian Ernests Kalve, who finished with 19 points.
Week 2 MVP Marton Bader once again provided the Hungarian team with a solid presence inside, collecting a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Group F Standings: EWE Baskets Oldenburg 3-0; Szolnoki Olaj 2-1; BC Timisoara 1-2; Lami-Véd Körmend 0-3.
In what was probably the most exciting clash on Game Day 3, Pizza Express Apollon picked up a first win in the Regular Season with a dramatic 89-88 win over BCM Gravelines Dunkerque.
The encounter that saw BCM losing for the first time in the EuroChallenge had all the ingredients of a memorable game.
It saw an MVP performance by Apollon's Brandon Brown, who finished with 28 points, five rebounds and four assists.
It had two lead changes in the final 26 seconds, with Cyril Akpomedah hitting a big three to put the guests up front, 88-87, before Dave Noel buried two free throws to give the hosts the lead.
And finally, it had a missed shot by Dwight Buycks at the buzzer, which could have swung the pendulum in BCM's direction.
Game Day 3 MVP Brown had plenty of support from Diego Capelan who added 17 points, while Buycks finished with 22 in a losing effort.
The other game in the group was not short on drama either, with Tsmoki-Minsk edging out SLUC Nancy 78-71.
The game in Minsk was closer than the final score suggests, with the French side fighting till the end and the Belarusians only securing victory by converting four consecutive free throws in the final 19 seconds.
Minsk owe a lot to an excellent performance by Aliaksandr Kudrautsau on the offensive end.
The Belarus international was five-for-six from behind the three-point arc and finished with 23 points and four assists.
Group G Standings: BCM Gravelines Dunkerque 2-1; Tsmoki-Minsk 2-1; SLUC Nancy 2-1; Pizza Express Apollon 1-2.
|Jerome Dyson's 18 points assisted Hapoel Holon to their second win of the season|
It wasn't easy, but Telekom Baskets Bonn managed somehow to avoid an upset at the hands of Armia at home and remain undefeated in Group F after three games.
The Georgian side surprised their hosts by taking a 26-14 lead at the start and the Germans faced an uphill struggle from then onwards.
Bonn's leader Jared Jordan had a rare off day but forward Kyle Weems stepped up with 17 points and seven rebounds to help the German team scrape a difficult, but still very valuable, 75-71 win.
On Wednesday, Hapoel Unet Holon returned to winning ways in a little less convincing fashion than Bonn.
Holon defeated Port of Antwerp Giants 88-64 at home, but it was not as easy as the final score suggests.
In fact the two teams went into the fourth quarter level at 53 and it was only an exceptional showing by the Israeli team in the final ten minutes that decided the outcome.
The hosts used a 15-3 run at the beginning of the final frame to finally gain some breathing space, 70-55.
Holon did not lay back but kept playing aggressive defence and forcing turnovers by the guests to effectively kill off the game with a 10-0 run that made it 86-60.
Sean Daniel and Jerome Dyson were joint top scorers with 18 points each, but equally important to the winners was Lawrence Hill's all-round performance, just three assists short of a triple-double.
The 2.04m forward finished with 11 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Group H Standings: Telekom Baskets Bonn 3-0; Hapoel Unet Holon 2-1; Port of Antwerp Giants 1-2; Armia 0-3.
For Groups A-through-D click here