Panathinaikos edge resilient Baskonia

Panathinaikos edge resilient Baskonia


Pathinaikos 80 - 76 Baskonia
(21 - 22)
(46 - 40)
(67 - 53)
(80 - 76)

Panathinaikos withstood a fourth quarter comeback from Baskonia to claim an important win in Thursday’s EuroLeague action…

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Greek Champions Panathinaikos claimed a crucial victory in the chase for home advantage in the EuroLeague playoffs by fending-off a resilient Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz side for an 80-76 win at OAKA on Thursday night.
Panathinaikos withstood a 23-13 run from Baskonia in the fourth quarter to keep their tabs on home advantage in the EuroLeague playoffs, though coach Xavi Pascual will not be satisfied with his team’s sloppy play in the final frame.
Kenny Gabriel and James Gist scored 15 points each to lead Panathinaikos scorers, while Nikos Calathes continued his impressive passing with 11 assists on the night.
Baskonia, who are in a chase to just make the playoffs, were led by the duo of Rodrigue Beaubois and Tornike Shengalia as each player tallied 15 points in the loss.
After a tight first quarter in which Baskonia took a one-point lead (22-21), Panathinaikos clawed back in the second frame to take a 46-40 lead into halftime.
The Trifylli continued their dominance in the third frame to open up a 14-point lead (67-53) heading into the final frame, but a pesky Baskonia side fought back in the fourth quarter. Despite strong three-point shooting from the Spanish side, ironically the visitors also missed four free throws on the night – missed opportunities that could’ve been used at the final buzzer.
With the win, Panathinaikos temporarily claim sole-possession of fourth place in the standings; however, with third-place Olympiacos visiting fifth-place Real Madrid on Friday night, the Trifylli could climb into third place with a Real Madrid win.
Baskonia, meanwhile, will lament their performance in the second and third quarters on Thursday night as the Spaniards slipped to two games outside of a playoff spot following Maccabi FOX Tel Aviv’s defeat of Barcelona.
Baskonia will be in tough when EuroLeague action resumes on 22 February as the Spanish side continues its road trip in Russia against league-leaders CSKA Moscow, one day before Panathinaikos invade Russia to take on Khimki Moscow Region.


by Peter Katsiris
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