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Week 4 Roundup

27 November 2013

EUROCHALLENGE

4. Joonas Lehtoranta (Team TEHO Sport Kotka)
Joonas Lehtoranta of Team TEHO Sport Kotka has been maintaining an ice-cool demeanour, regardless of his young age

Bakken Bears Aarhus abolished their unbeaten record, while Fortress Jaszberenyi and Gasterra Flames Groningen came closer than ever, but failed to get off the mark in the EuroChallenge.

The Week 4 schedule of the EuroChallenge Regular Season consisted of only three games, which had not taken place during the first three weeks of the competition for a variety of reasons, but was not any less noteworthy for that.

We take a look at some points that are worth taking away from these three encounters ahead of the action-packed and crucial Week 5 that awaits us next Tuesday.

Keep An Eye On:
Team TEHO Sport Kotka stormed back from 18 points down to stun GasTerra Flames Groningen on Tuesday, thanks in great part to the cool-as-ice display of 19-year-old Joonas Lehtoranta in the fourth quarter. The young shooting guard delivered his best performance in the EuroChallenge so far, finishing with nine points and two assists and, most importantly, drilled two vital triples in the clutch to help his team snatch a victory that seemed highly improbable at the start of the final frame.

Blast From The Past:
Chris Christoffersen, who turned 34 last August, was on the Bakken Aarhus roster when the club played their first European game in 2005 and is still fighting every battle on the glass for the Danish outfit eight years later. The 2.18m center did his best to prevent defeat for Bakken on Tuesday, collecting a double-double of 10 points and 11 rebounds and blocking three shots for good measure.

6. Aaron Mc Ghee (Ural Ekaterinburg)
Aaron Mc Ghee and Ural Ekaterinburg are making their city known amongst basketball circles for more than just the city's women's team

Stat Of The Week:
Bakken Bears Aarhus did almost everything right on Tuesday night in their home clash with Cholet Basket. The Danes shot the ball from the floor much better than their opponents, out-rebounded the French side 44-32 and dished out as many assists as their guests, yet they slumped to their first loss of the season, 68-66. It would almost be inexplicable, if one did not stop to glance at the turnovers column. Bakken turned the ball over an astonishing 22 times on their home court, and Cholet scored more than one third of their points off those turnovers.

Hitting The Headlines:
Ekaterinburg is a city synonymous with women's basketball in Russia and in Europe, but Ural are making huge strides to put the men's game in the map. While their win against Fortress Jaszberenyi on Tuesday is not a huge landmark in the great scheme of things, it keeps them firmly in the race for a top-two finish in Group F. If they succeed in advancing to the Last 16, Ural would achieve a remarkable feat for a club that does not compete in the top flight domestically. Judging from the average attendance of almost 4,000 in their home games, the city folk seem to be taking notice and enjoying every minute of the European campaign so far.

Quote Of The Week:
"I don't actually know why we won. They stopped their defence in the final quarter and we made two big three-point shots in a row," said Team TEHO Sport Kotka head coach Sami Toivianen after his team hit 15 three-pointers to earn an amazing come-from-behind 76-72 victory at GasTerra Flames Groningen.

 


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