Basket advanced to the 7DAYS EuroCup Semifinals for the ninth time in club history by downing Boulogne Metropolitans 92 98-85 at La Fonteta on Wednesday.
Valencia KOs Metropolitans, 98-85, to advance
Valencia took another step in its challenge for a fifth EuroCup title and Metropolitans lost its chance to reach the semifinals for the first time. Jasiel Rivero led the winners with 21 points, Bojan Dubljevic posted 16 points and 13 rebounds, Martin Hermannsson had 14 points and 11 assists while Jaime Pradilla and Xabi Lopez-Arostegui each scored 10 for Valencia. Will Cummings led Metropolitans with a career-high 31 points. Jordan McRae added 20 and Miralem Halilovic 12 for the visitors. Neno Dimitrijevic and Dubljevic fueled an 11-0 run that boosted Valencia's margin to 43-28 in the second quarter, it was 56-46 at halftime and the hosts held on the rest of the way.
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Hermannsson got Valencia going with a three-pointer and Victor Claver bettered Cummings's floater with a bomb from downtown for a 6-2 lead. Rivero scored down low and Mike Tobey added an alley-oop slam that boosted the hosts' lead to 10-4. Vince Hunter followed a driving basket with a layup, but Tobey took over with back-to-back triples. Halilovic followed a tip-in with a close jumper and got help from McRae and Cummings to bring Metropolitans within 20-19. Rivero hit a jump hook and followed Sam Van Rossom's triple with a bomb from beyond the arc. After Pradilla and Lopez-Arostegui found their first points, Halilovic got his team within 32-26 after 10 minutes.
Bandja Sy scored around the basket early in the second quarter. Dimitrijevic banked in a stop-and-pop jumper and Dubljevic added a three-pointer and a layup in an 11-0 run that gave Valencia a 43-28 lead. Keith Hornsby and McRae stepped up for Metropolitans, bringing the visitors within 43-32. Dubljevic ignited the crowd with a layup-and-one which Pradilla followed with a jump hook that broke the game open, 48-32. Cummings took over with a wild driving layup, a jumper and a three-pointer, giving his team hope at 52-39. McRae followed a jumper with a driving layup and then beat the halftime buzzer with a triple to bring the visitors even closer, 56-46.
Cummings scored in penetration soon after the break. Hermansson and Lahaou Konate traded three-pointers, then Dubljevic made a jump hook for a 61-51 cushion. Halilovic dunked and Cummings bettered Claver's jumper with a triple that brought Metropolitans within 63-56. Lopez-Arostegui answered from downtown and Pradilla added a reverse layup for a 68-56 Valencia lead. Cummings bettered Hermansson's fastbreak layup with a bomb from downtown. Lopez-Arostegui answered from beyond the arc and Dubjevic downed a jump gook for a 75-61 Valencia margin. McRae and Steeve Ho-You-Fat brought the visitors within 79-68 after 30 minutes.
Louis Labeyrie buried a corner triple soon after the break, as Valencia improved its defense. McRae found answers with a bomb from downtown, Hunter added an alley-oop layup before Cummings's three-point play got Metropolitans within 84-76 with over 6 minutes left. After Labeyrie and Hornsby exchanged three-pointers, Dubljevic restored an 88-79 Valencia lead. Cummings buried a one-handed floater and made free throws to make it 90-83. Rivero scored twice around the basket to seal the outcome, 94-84, already in the final minute.