Virtus Segafredo Bologna grabbed its fourth win in Group B by downing Cedevita Olimpija Ljubljana 101-104 in the Slovenian capital on Wednesday. Virtus improved to 4-2 in the standings while Olimpija dropped to 2-4.
Virtus survives high-scoring showdown in Ljubljana, 101-104
Marco Belinelli led the winners with 21 points, Milos Teodosic added 19, Mam Jaiteh 17, Kyle Weems 15 and Ty-Shon Alexander 10 for Virtus. Yogi Ferrell paced Cedevita with 24 points and 11 assists in his debut. Edo Muric and Alen Omic each scored 18 points, Jaka Blazic had 15 and Jacob Pullen 10. Jaiteh, Weems and Teodosic shined early to give Virtus a 10-18 lead. Omic and Pullen helped Cedevita to get within 25-29 after 10 minutes. Ferrell and Muric took over in the second quarter, getting help from Omic to bring the hosts closer, 53-54, at halftime. Ferrell and an outstanding Omic put Cedevita ahead, 70-67, midway through the third quarter. Weems dunked to tie it at 82-82 after 30 minutes. Belinelli, Teodosic and Weems made the difference in crunch time; Cedevita fought back, but Pullen missed from downtown at the buzzer.
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7DAYS Magic Moment: Alibegovic streaks in for the slam!
Jaiteh got Virtus going with a layup and Weems soon added a backdoor basket. Teodosic sank back-to-back triples and added a floater for a 5-12 Virtus lead. Ferrell struck from beyond the arc and Blazic found his first points, but Weems and Jaiteh fueled a 0-6 run that caused Cedevita to call timeout at 10-18. After Teodosic found Jaiteh for a dunk, Omic and Muric brought the hosts within 18-20. Pullen buried a couple of three-pointers but Teodosic, Alexander and Belinelli each struck from downtown to keep Virtus ahead, 25-29, after 10 minutes.
Amedeo Tessitori and Muric traded three-pointers early in the second quarter. Tessitori insisted from beyond the arc and Belinelli added a put-back layup that made it a double-digit game, 28-39. Omic scored in the paint, but Belinelli answered with a wild four-point play. Muric and Ferrell each struck from downtown to bring the hosts within 36-43. Ferrell improved Alessandro Pajola's layup with a three-point play and Muric added a triple to bring Cedevita within 42-45. Pajola, Blazic and Amar Alibegovic each struck from beyond the arc. Jaiteh hit a jump hook for a 48-53 Virtus lead. Farrell stepped up with 5 quick points, but Teodosic gave Virtus a 53-54 lead at the break.
Muric buried his fourth three-pointer right after the break, giving Cedevita its first lead, 56-54. Jaiteh sank a jump hook and erased Omic's triple with a layup-plus-foul. Weems joined the three-point shootout, but Omic followed a layup with a floater in a 6-0 run that restored a 65-62 Cedevita lead. Blazic and Teodosic exchanged bombs from downtown before Ferrell gave his team a 70-67 edge. Jaiteh stayed on fire with a put-back basket and Teodosic banked in a running shot, giving Virtus a 70-71 lead. Muric made a backdoor layup and Blazic added a three-pointer, but Tessitori brought the guests within 76-74. Belinelli bettered Zach Auguste's slam with a triple. Pullen hit a jumper and Marko Radovanovic dunked to force Virtus to call timeout at 82-77. Belinelli insisted from downtown and Weems dunked to tie it at 82-82 after 30 minutes.
Melvin Ejim found his first points early in the fourth quarter. After Belinelli answered with a reverse layup, Alibegovic added a step-back jumper and Alexander buried a triple for an 85-89 Virtus lead with over 6 minutes left. Alexander scored off a steal, but Ejim followed a layup with a jumper to make it 89-91. Belinelli buried an off-balance three-pointer and Teodosic hit a jumper that boosted the margin to 90-96. Omic swished a jumper but Weems silenced the crowd with a four-point play that seemed to seal the outcome, 92-100, with over 2 minutes left. Alen Hodzic, Blazic and Ejim, however, brought Cedevita within 101-104 with 8.8 seconds left. Weems missed free throws but Pullen missed from downtown at the buzzer.