AEK advance despite PAOK defeat

AEK advance despite PAOK defeat


AEK 62 - 63 PAOK
(18 - 14)
(32 - 27)
(45 - 47)
(62 - 63)

AEK are through to the quarterfinals of the Basketball Champions League on aggregate despite a 63-62 defeat at the hands of PAOK in Athens on Wednesday night…

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AEK’s title defense in the Basketball Champions League will see another day after the Enosi survived their Round of 16 tie with PAOK despite a 63-62 defeat to their northern rivals in Athens on Wednesday night.

Having done much of their damage in the first leg in Thessaloniki last week, AEK booked a spot in the quarterfinals with a 146-138 aggregate win – meaning the reigning champions are one step closer to defending their title later this spring.

PAOK, who faced a tall order on the night after last week’s up-and-down performance at the PAOK Sports Arena, were led by Jondre Jefferson’s 11-point outing while William Hatcher and Vangelis Margaritis each added 10 points on the night.

Vince Hunter’s 11 points and 7 rebounds led all AEK scorers while the veteran forward Jonas Maciulis added 10 points for Luca Banchi’s men.

In control of the tie heading into the night, AEK increased grip on a spot in the next round with an 18-14 run in the first quarter before adding to their lead in the second frame for a 32-27 lead at halftime.

If PAOK were to get back into the tie then the Dikefalos tou Vorra needed a much-improved second half performance. Ilias Papatheodorou’s men would have been encouraged by a 20-13 run in the third quarter, which gave the visitors a two-point lead on the night.

Despite their strong start to the second half, PAOK needed to replicate that effort in the fourth quarter; however, suffocating defense from AEK choked-out any momentum PAOK had built as the visitors were held to just 16 points in the final frame.

AEK will now face German side Brose Bamberg in the quarterfinals for a chance at reaching their second straight Final Four.



by Peter Katsiris

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