Aris take Thessaloniki Derby for spot in Greek Cup semis

Aris take Thessaloniki Derby for spot in Greek Cup semis


Aris 70 - 63 PAOK
(17 - 16)
(42 - 29)
(58 - 44)
(70 - 63)

Aris marked the return of club legend Panagiotis Giannakis as manager with a monumental win (70-63) over local rivals PAOK on Wednesday night, paving the way for a berth in the semi-finals of the Greek Cup.

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In his competitive debut on the touch-line for the club, Giannakis steered Aris to the semi-finals of the Greek Cup

In what was a tight contest at the Nick Galis Hall, Aris grabbed just a one-point (17-16) lead after the opening quarter as PAOK kept the hosts in check. The Aris lead only expanded in the second quarter as Giannakis’ men notched 25 points in the frame to take a 42-29 lead into the interval.

The third quarter was much tighter as Aris turned up the pressure on defense, but still did enough to build on their lead. PAOK’s scoring woes continued as the Dikefale tou Vorra struggled to tally more than 16 points in a quarter.

PAOK would ultimately reach that feat in the final frame, as the visitors looked to force overtime; however, PAOK’s 19-12 run in the fourth quarter was only good enough to cut the Aris lead in half by the final buzzer.

Keith Benson and Panagiotis Vasilopoulos finished as joint top-scorers for Aris with 12 points each, with the latter also racking up 10 rebounds for a double-double. Meanwhile, first-year
PAOK player Kevin Dillard led all-scorers with 14 points.

Aris now join the likes of Panathinaikos, AEK, and Olympiacos in Monday’s draw for the Greek Cup semi-finals, which are scheduled for November 5.


by Peter Katsiris
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