|30 September 2013|
BASKETBALL IN EUROPE
|Den Bosch clinched their first ever Dutch Supercup title on Sunday (photo: Christian Aarts)|
SPM Shoeters Den Bosch kicked off their 2013-14 campaign in style with a 68-47 win over ZZ Leiden to claim their first Dutch Supercup.
Established in 2011, the Supercup marks the first title clash of the season, with the reigning champions going up against the cup winners.
Reigning Dutch champions ZZ Leiden had won the previous two editions, their 2012 triumph coming off a 67-57 win over Den Bosch.
In Sunday's rematch between the two EuroChallenge participants, SPM Shoeters got off to a better start, taking a narrow 32-28 lead at half-time.
Sam Jones' men further tightened the screws on defense in the second half, allowing Leiden a meagre 19 points.
SPM Shoeters kept making their shots on the offensive end and controlled the rebounds, a 15-0 run spanning the third and fourth quarter giving them the lead for good.
Kees Akerboom led the winners with 17 points, while Tai Wesley delivered an all-round performance of 12 points, seven assists and five rebounds.
"It was a very physical game, but our defence carried us through in the second half," Wesley commented after the game.
"We are excited about the trophy, but that's only a start. We have a long road ahead of us."
In the EuroChallenge, Den Bosch were drawn in Group A and will do battle against Rakvere Tarvas, JDA Dijon and Antwerp Giants, whilst ZZ Leiden will face Kataja Basket, Cholet Basket and Bakken Bears in Group G.
VIENNA FALL TO KLOSTERNEUBURG
Austrian champions BC Zepter Vienna missed out on their first Supercup trophy, falling to title defenders yourgoody dukes Klosterneuburg, 76-78.
"Klosterneuburg is a worthy opponent and we expect an intense game on a high level," Vienna head coach Darko Russo had warned before Sunday's clash, and the game turned into the fight everybody expected.
In an entertaining game with plenty of lead changes, the teams entered the final frame with the scores tied at 60.
Klosterneuburg eventually pulled away in crunch time to take a 78-71 lead, Vienna's final comeback attempt being too little, too late.
Montenegrin guard Nikola Pavlicevic led the scoring for Vienna with 20 points, before exiting the game in the third quarter with a disqualifying foul.
Curtis Bobb was the top scorer for Klosterneuburg with 23 points, his personal performance being crowned with the MVP award.
BC Zepter Vienna will start their domestic league campaign on 5 October and kick off their first international stint one month later, taking on Södertälje BK, Tartu Rock and BK Ventspils in EuroChallenge Group C.