Historical Night For Fenerbahce

22.03.2013

EUROLEAGUE WOMEN

35. Angel McCoughtry (Fenerbahce)
Angel McCoughtry had 17 points and 14 rebounds on the night

Turning Point: With the game tied at 43-43, Fenerbahce exploded with a stunning 21-5 run across the third and fourth quarter break, to establish a double-digit lead and they never had cause to look back.

Game Heroes: Anastasiya Verameyenka was terrific at both ends of the floor. She finished with an efficient 10 points but came up with five blocks and those defensive plays were significant. Angel McCoughtry meanwhile had a double-double of 17 points and 14 rebounds.

Stats Don't Lie: Good Angels Kosice average 76.8 points-per-game so they were a mammoth 20 points down on their average, mainly due to great defence by Fenerbahce. Kosice managed only five points in a disastrous ten minute spell during the second half.

Fenerbahce will be the first Turkish club to contest the EuroLeague Women Final after a 68-56 win against Good Angels Kosice booked their spot in Sunday's title game against UMMC Ekaterinburg.

Once again the Istanbul club had to come from behind having trailed 35-28 at the midway point of the game and whilst hardly ideal, Angel McCoughtry believes the fight back underlined the team ethic of Fenerbahce.

"We had another bad start to the game, but we came back strongly in the second half and that again showed our strength and unity as a team," insisted McCoughtry.

"I can't believe we have made history for Turkish women's basketball and that we will now get to play in the Championship game.

"We played much better defence and with energy in the second half and that was really important for us."

The night started very brightly for Kosice, with some excellent early work under the basket from Petra Kulichova helping them establish an 11-6 advantage - although Fenerbahce whittled it down to a solitary point at 15-14 after ten minutes had elapsed.

Kosice then made successive scores from three-point range via Miljana Bojovic and Helena Sverrisdottir, to initiate an impressive 10-0 run which put them 27-16 ahead and had Fenerbahce calling a much needed time-out.

It proved a smart move as Fenerbahce trimmed the lead down to 35-28 at the half, although they still had work to do when they returned in shackling Plenette Pierson and Kulichova who had combined for 20 points.

And, the pair started the second half by wrestling each other for an offensive rebound, showing the voracious appetite Kosice have had all year for crashing the offensive glass.

It didn't prevent a Fenerbahce revival as Cappie Pondexter made a three-pointer to make it a one-shot game, with the same player levelling matters at 39, before promptly handing her team the lead from the free-throw line.

Things began to disintegrate offensively for Kosice in a big way from this point onwards, head coach Maros Kovacik being handed a technical foul towards the end of the third period after showing his frustration.

As Good Angels tried desperately to fight their way back after falling behind by double-digits early in the fourth, they couldn't breach the improved Fenerbahce defence with the kind of regularity they needed.

Consequently their chances of making the Final rapidly ebbed away, to leave Fenerbahce celebrating their historic moment and contemplating the prospect of facing the hosts on Sunday.

 


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