REPORT | 07/06/2015 | Edu Bueno | PHOTOGRAPHER: Ángel MartínezThe Whites made a 21 point comeback but ended up losing in a game that was decided in the last minute.
- Liga Endesa
- Semi Final (Game 2)
- Sun, 07 Jun
The set up of both sides, who were enormously effective in attack, offered a frenetic first quarter of attacking play. This display of accuracy saw Madrid leading until the 7' minute with 5/6 three pointers scored, three from Llull (9 points) and two from Carroll, and good work from Reyes in the paint (20-17, min. 7).
The even game is broken open
However, this was a different Valencia side to the one seen in the first game. All of the team connected to make sure the absences of Ribas and Loncar were forgotten about. Sato, who did not play on Thursday, reached 7 points, the same number as Harangody. Their defensive intensity and control of rebounds at both baskets (10 versus 3) resulted in them taking the initiative throughout the rest of the first half. The emergence of Nedovic, with 7 consecutive points launched Valencia Basket into their best period with a run of 2-24 between the 7’ and 13’ minute. The Whites had a four minute drought that really cost them (22-41, min. 13).
Nocioni to the rescue
The Argentinian once again rescued Madrid with his courage. He contributed his aggressiveness and commitment and the team came back to life. His seven points and the improvement in defence with Slaughter and Mejri as the inside pairing, saw Madrid have a 19-12 run in order to combat the avalanche from the visitors (41-53, min. 20).
The Whites had managed to change the dynamic of the game but they had not succeeded in reaching their opponents. Every big Madrid push was met with a response from the visitors, who kept adding three pointers with Vives, Van Rossom and Lishchuk scoring in almost every way possible (46-60, min. 23). However, Madrid did not lose hope and through their belief in victory, they managed to do what seemed impossible. With a praiseworthy attitude reflected in the trio of Reyes (10 points), Ayón (6) and the incredible Llull (21 points at the end of the third quarter), and the Palacio completely behind them, they gradually reduced the deficit little by little until they managed a comeback with the score at 74-73 in the 31’ minute. It was the result of a 28-7 run in nine minutes.
In the 34' minute Madrid reached the maximum lead with the score at 79-75 after five consecutive points from Nocioni. However, with the wind in their sails, Madrid were guilty of trying to resolve the game through three pointers. Their haste allowed a Valencia Basket side who were severely wounded, to get back into the game, and they dealt the home side a deadly blow with an 11-0 run led by Dubljevic (79-89, min. 38). Far from throwing in the towel, the Whites made a last-ditch effort. A 3+1 from Llull and baskets from Chacho and Reyes left the score at 89-91 with 50 seconds left. Nedovic missed two free-throws in the next move, and Reyes had a shot to equalise. It did not go in, and after a foul, Vives shot to give the win to Valencia Basket (89-93, min. 40).
REAL MADRID 89 (22+19+30+18): Llull (28), Carroll (6), Rudy (6), Reyes (17) and Ayón (6) --starting five--; Sergio Rodríguez (7), Maciulis (3), Mejri (4), Nocioni (12), Slaughter (0), Rivers (0) and Doncic (-).
VALENCIA BASKET 93 (31+22+20+20): Van Rossom (13), Martínez (3), Sato (8), Harangody (9) and Lishchuk (10).--starting five--; Vives (14), Lucic (4), Aguilar (0), Nedovic (14) and Dubljevic (18).