Darussafaka hands Partizan first loss
There is one fewer undefeated team in the 7DAYS EuroCup Top 16 after Darussafaka Tekfen Istanbul outlasted visiting Partizan NIS Belgrade 65-63 on Tuesday in Group E. Both teams are now 2-1 with shares of first place in the Group. Berk Demir hit 3 of 6 three-point shots to lead the winners with 13 points. Jarrod Jones added 12 and Gary Browne 11, including key ones down the stretch, to go with his 9 assists. Partizan got 13 points each from three players – Rade Zagorac, Marcus Paige and James McAdoo – but no one else rose above 7. Each team enjoyed six-point leads in the first half, which Partizan finished ahead by 30-32. The visitors scored the first 4 points after halftime, but Darussafaka soon went on a 10-0 run to take control of the scoreboard, though barely, to the finish.
Defenses dominated until Demir hit a corner triple and came back soon with a swan-dive slam for an 8-2 Darussafaka start. Partizan stayed stuck there before Nikola Jankovic's put-back, and soon the visitors drew within 10-7. Browne and Sinan Guler joined the hosts' scoring as they led 15-12 after 10 minutes. After Dogus Ozdemiroglu's three-pointer for Darussafaka early in the second quarter, McAdoo's second dunk got Partizan within 18-17. He then drew a charge that set up a go-ahead second-chance triple by Zagorac. Ognjen Jaramaz and Ozdemiroglu traded steals and breakaway layups before Jaramaz hit from long range to make it 20-25. Nemanja Gordic, from deep, supplied Partizan's biggest lead yet, 23-29. Jones and Demir both matched him to tie, but Gordic had the last laugh on a second-chance triple to make it 30-32 for Partizan at the half. McAdoo's transition layup and free throws shot Partizan ahead 30-36 after the break. Demir's dunk and third triple cut led to Bonzie Colson scoring off a steal for a new Darussafaka lead, 39-38. Browne beat the shot-clock buzzer and added a baseline jumper as Darussafaka completed a 10-0 run to a 44-38 advantage. A dunk by Jones was answered by put-backs from Jaramaz and William Mosely as Darussafaka hung onto a 48-43 lead after 30 minutes. Guler gave Darussafaka the largest lead yet, 54-45, with a pair of baskets early in the final quarter. Free throws and a triple by Paige revived Partizan at 54-50. Kartal Ozmizrak answered from deep for Darussafaka and McAdoo's dunk was matched by Johnathan Hamilton from the baseline at 59-52. A huge block by Rashawn Thomas freed Paige for another triple, the Zagorac followed with his own and a shorter jumper, but Ozmizrak's bomb in between kept Darussafaka up 63-60. McAdoo finished a broken play with free throws at 63-62 with 1 minute left, but Browne answered with a pull-up jumper. After a Partizan free throw and Browne's miss, Zagarac attempted a game-winning fastbreak triple that fell short, letting Darussafaka keep the win in Istanbul.
During a game in which easy baskets were in short supply, Gary Brown had a hand in many, mainly as a passer, with 9 assists, one fewer than Partizan's whole team. He had 2 of his 4 field goals in a 10-0 takeover run in the third quarter, and when Partizan drew within 63-62 in the final minute, he had the answer with the game's final basket, a pull-up jumper with 40 seconds left. He also had 4 rebounds and 3 steals.
James McAdoo's 5 points matched Partizan's high lead at 30-36 right after the half. He missed 2 free throws to get it higher, however, and soon Demir and Browne led Darussafaka on a 14-2 run to seize control of the scoreboard, at 44-38, and never give it up the rest of the way.
Partizan's 63 points were its low of the season and
third-lowest total in 49 EuroCup games to date. Darussafaka's defense accomplished that by holding the guests to 41.9% two-point and 25.0% three-point shooting while forcing 13 turnovers, 9 of which were steals by the hosts.
Did you notice?
Johnathan Hamilton of Darussafaka came into the game as the runaway offensive rebounding leader, with 4.4 per game, but was held to 1 by Partizan, for whom big man Nikola Jankovic had 4 of his own, all before halftime, in just 14 minutes total. Partizan had 13 rebounds to just 7 by the hosts, but could not make them count.
These teams turn around and play each other again on Wednesday of Round 4 next week in Belgrade. The winner will retain a piece of first place in Group E with just two left to play in the Top 16.
Tuesday, January 21, 2020