|17 May 2012|
|Zoran Erceg scored a game-high 23 points but it was not enough for Besiktas to avoid defeat in the first game of the Turkish play-offs semi-final series |
GALA PIP BESIKTAS IN OPENER
EuroChallenge champions Besiktas Milangaz fell 75-74 at Galatasaray Medical Park in the opening game of their Beko Basketbol Ligi (Turkish league) play-off semi-final series on Wednesday.
Both sides entered this stage of the post-season on the back of 2-0 sweeps against their quarter-final opponents.
Galatasaray, the regular-season winners, stormed into a 42-28 lead by half-time but Besiktas battled back and nearly stunned the hosts at the Abdi Ipekci.
Gala made crucial free throws in the final minute to seal the victory.
21-year-old Turkey international Furkan Aldemir had 17 points and five rebounds for the winners, while Zoran Erceg poured in a game-high 23 in defeat for Besiktas.
Banvit won the opening game of the other play-off semi-final against Anadolu Efes, 68-66.
TRIUMPH KNOTTED AT 1-1
Triumph Lyubertsy had a hugely impressive campaign in the EuroChallenge and reached the Final Four where Vasily Karasev's team came in third.
Now the team is trying to defeat Lokomotiv Kuban in the battle for third place in Russia's PBL and the series is tied at 1-1.
Triumph prevailed in the opener, 91-86, with Tywain McKee's 24 points and Sergey Karasev's 21 leading the way.
Jerry Jefferson also poured in 18 points and grabbed 11 rebounds.
In Game 2, Karasev had 25 points and Jefferson 23 but Lokomotiv won, 93-81.
"We cannot ignore the fact that we had a very hard and long season, which had about 80 games," Vasily Karasev said.
"In addition, we have a rather short bench, in contrast to the Kuban team...
"Well, now it is very important to recover and relax. In Kuban, we will go only for victory."
SZOLNOKI IN FINAL; CHALON IN PLAY-OFFS
The EuroChallenge Final Four hosts Szolnoki Olaj have reached the Hungarian play-off finals and will take on Falco-Szova KC-Szombathely.
Szolnoki brushed aside Kecskemeti 3-0 in the quarter-finals and then swept Albacomp, 3-0, to reach the title series.
Falco-Szova were 3-2 winners over Sopron and then downed Kormed, 3-1.
In France, Elan Chalon clinched a second-place finish in the regular season and are now awaiting the start of the play-offs.
Their quarter-final opponent could be no other than Roanne Basket.
The two French teams have already faced each other numerous times this season, in the domestic cup competitions, the EuroChallenge play-offs and obviously the Pro A regular season.
The first game of the series is on Wednesday 23 May at Chalon.