Bamberg ‘Find A Way’ To Three-Peat

11 June 2012

Beko BBL Champions 2012 Brose Baskets Bamberg
Beko BBL 2012 champions Brose Baskets Bamberg celebrating their title on Sunday

Brose Baskets Bamberg were made to sweat by ratiopharm Ulm but they edged their opponents in Game 3 of the BEKO Bundesliga play-off finals at the weekend, 97-95, to capture the German title.

Ulm were the surprise package in the 2011-12 campaign and they made a lasting impression in the final game of the title battle.

Bamberg had rolled to a 98-72 Game 1 triumph and then a 86-70 victory in Game 2.

In front of a 6,800-sellout crowd in Game 3, Isaiah Swann erupted for a game-high 36 points for Ulm and Germany national team hopeful Per Gunther added 17.

They led 92-91 after a basket by Swanne with 1:50 remaining.

But Bamberg held their nerve and went in front to stay when Casey Jacobsen hit a three-pointer with 51 seconds to go.

With nine seconds to play, Bamberg's lead grew to 96-91 after Brian Roberts fed Tibor Pleiss and the Germany center powered his way up for a basket.

They held on for a narrow win.

Roberts led six Bamberg players in double figures with 16 points.

2012 Beko BBL Finals MVP P.J. Tucker
The Finals MVP, P.J. Tucker, and his Bamberg teammates 'found a way' to another title, just like their coach had asked them

Chris Fleming, the coach of Bamberg, said: "Ulm has shown why they were so strong this season and they delivered an outstanding final but I am incredibly proud of my team.

"Our motto this season was 'find a way'.

"Today, we were tested by Ulm but we have found a way."

Bamberg did not start the post-season in the right manner, falling 75-74 in Game 1 to Telekom Baskets Bonn.

If anything, though, that result helped them concentrate better for the rest of the play-offs.

They forced Ulm to commit 18 turnovers in Game 3.

"The defeat in the first play-off game against Bonn made us more focused," Fleming admitted.

"The way in which the team has played since has been outstanding."

Thorsten Leibenath, the Ulm coach who has been praised a lot for the job he's done this season, said: "Bamberg has earned the title without a doubt.

"But I also have to pay tribute to may team.

"What they showed today was a reflection of this season.

"They fought terrifically for 40 minutes."

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