Matt Costello's career night against Efes
In an unforgettable game at Buesa Arena, Cazoo Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz edged Anadolu Efes Istanbul 114-111 in overtime to improve to 12-9 in the standings. The hosts relied on an unlikely hero down the stretch, as Matt Costello came up clutch in the closing stages.
Costello finished the game with a new career high of 33 points, burying 6-of-8 two-pointers, 5-of-8 three-pointers and 6-of-7 free throws. He added 5 rebounds, an assist, a steal, a block and 4 fouls drawn for a personal-best PIR of 33. His previous highs in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague were 23 points and a PIR of 28 against FC Bayern Munich and LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne, respectively, last season.
"We were not successful to stop their pick-and-pop possessions to Matt Costello," Efes head coach Ergin Ataman admitted after the game. "He did an excellent job tonight. He was the star of the game."
Costello played a critical role in Baskonia's win, stepping up in overtime to put his team ahead for good. Shane Larkin buried a three-pointer that gave Efes a 108-111 lead with 1:18 remaining, but Costello was the only player to score after that. He stepped up with a putback layup, then went 4-of-4 from the free-throw line in the last 22.4 seconds for a 114-11 score. Darius Thompson blocked Tibor Pleiss's three-point shot at the buzzer, but Baskonia would not have won without Costello's late heroics.
"The ball was going in the hole and my teammates were finding me, so it worked out. It felt good to get some things going," Costello said after the game. "I have been playing bad for the last couple of weeks, so [it was good] to have a good game like this, especially against Efes."