Comeback in Lugo ahead of the Copa del Rey

73 -80

Río Breogán


Real Madrid

Llull, with 17 points and 5 threes in 21 minutes, played a key role in the win over Río Breogán in our 50th game of the season.

Comeback in Lugo ahead of the Copa del Rey

Real Madrid had to win to head off to the Copa del Rey as League leaders, and win they did. In their 50th game of the season, Chus Mateo's boys got the better of Río Breogán in Lugo to make it 19 victories before the trip to Málaga and the FIBA international break. It was a tough match-up against a highly motivated opponent, but the team grew into the game to clinch a fine result, coming from 12 points behind in the second half. Llull was key with 5 triples (17 points in 21 minutes), while Tavares (13 points and 19 PIR) and Campazzo (16 points, 7 assists and 17 PIR) played important roles too.

There was a stunning atmosphere at the Fontes do Sar to welcome the league leaders. The hosts took the initiative early one, flying out the box and showing aggression and energy in abundance. The offensive rebound made it tough for us to build up a head of steam, as McLemore and Jaime Fernández led their unit to a 12-point lead in the opening quarter. Campazzo and Deck posted 5 points each, the best performers for the madridistas in the opening period (24-12, min.9).

Musa and Llull level the game
Our second five took to the court, brining added patience in offense, allowing us to control the rebound and up the intensity all round. Without Sergio Rodríguez (or Rudy), Alocén took up the mantle from Campazzo. The point guard delivered aggression and a fine spell in game management and defense. But the game-changer in this quarter was the Musa-Llull duo. The Bosnian came out flying against his former club and caried the team on his shoulders (9 points), as the captain hit three triples. The two of them posted 18 points of the team's 24 in the period. Poirier helped out in the paint (5 rebounds) and Madrid came back slowly to go ahead at 36-37 with 18 minutes gone. The remainder of the first half was an end-to-end affair, but the Galician team went into the break in the lead (42-39).

Río Breogán started the third quarter strongly once again, doing damage from the perimeter and taking control of the game through McLemore, who now sat on 19 points. Madrid were forced to dig in against a confident and flowing opponent, but they were hurt by simple shots not finding the hoop and the hosts winning every 50-50 (54-42, min.25). We needed to find solutions, which ultimately came in the form of improved offense, thanks to Deck and Tavares' efforts on the offensive rebound. The Cape Verde-born center ran riot in the hosts' paint, while Llull found his range again with another couple of triples. We conceded just three points from free-throws as a 3-12 run saw us clinch the quarter (57-54, min.30).

Desire and defense carries us to victory 
Madrid successfully turned the game around in the final quarter. An exhausted Llull trudged off to the bench having breathed new life into his team. The captain's efforts had been remarkable once more (17 points and 5 triples). Río Breogán were going to give it their all though, pushing the league leaders hard in front of the home fans and showing unmatched commitment in defense. Hezonja enjoyed an incredible closing spell at the back, while Campazzo and Tavares led from the front. An 8-16 run closed out what was a hard-fought win in our 50th game of the season. Now attentions turn to the Copa del Rey, where we open against UCAM Murcia on Thursday (6:00pm CET).