Arka battles to win in Podgorica
In a game that Asseco Arka Gdynia only lead for 7 minutes, it took its chances at the end and consigned Buducnost VOLI Podgorica to an 0-3 record with a 59-62 victory. Buducnost steamed into an early lead, but a combination of poor shooting and Arka’s refusal to quit made the game a lot closer than it looked like it would be in the early going. The visitors eventually toppled what was once a 13-point Buducnost lead and fought to their second win of the season. The visitors had a couple of MVP candidates as Josh Bostic scored 19 and Ben Emelogu tallied 17 points and 9 rebounds. Devonte Upson posted 10 points and 9 boards.
Hassan Martin scored 14 and added almost as many rebounds with 13 for Buducnost. Justin Cobbs added 13 points and Scott Bamforth 10 in defeat.
Buducnost got off to a better start and led 5-2 after a couple of minutes. Adam Hrycaniuk reduced the lead to the minimum at 11-10 as the visitors got into the game. Buducnost improved again though and scored 10 without reply to leave the score 21-10 after 10 minutes. It was more of the same to start the second quarter. Cobb extended the lead at 26-12 with a three as Buducnost started to assert its dominance. Emelogu hit Arka’s first three of the night on the team's 10th attempt as the visitors finally had some joy from deep. The score was 28-17 and Arka showed signs of life despite the deficit. Bostic got the score down to 33-28 as halftime approached. They reduced Buducnost’s lead even further with a free throw from Bostic as the half finished 35-32. Nikolic hit a three and was fouled as Buducnost started the second half in flying fashion. The score was level for the first time since the start after another Emelogu hit a three and suddenly it was the home side who was looking vulnerable. It was Bostic again who leveled matters after Buducnost eked its way in front. In the dying second of the third, Bostic gave Arka its first lead since the start of the game at 46-47 with 3 free throws. The final quarter was just as close with Buducnost retaking the lead at 48-47. Bostic got his first three at a pivotal time as he leveled it at 53-53 with 5 minutes to play and with the game hanging in the balance. Arka hadn’t led much at all during the game but took an important lead as Emelogu hit a three - his fifth - with the game winding down. The visitors led 54-58 with slightly more than 2 minutes to play. Bostic restored that lead at 56-60 to help seal the outcome.
At times, it felt like Arka couldn’t buy a basket. But Emelogu came up big with 5 threes from 9 efforts and scored 17 points in total. He also had 9 rebounds. On the road, on a night when they needed someone to step up, Emelogu took up the mantle as Arka’s hero and delivered.
It had to be that man again. Emelogu hit a three with over 2 minutes to play and it gave Arka a 4-point lead. It was a lead that the visiting side would never relinquish. It gave them a cushion and put the onus on Buducnost to make something happen.
Arka will be counting its lucky stars that they got out of Montenegro with the win. It was one of those nights when neither team could find its range. Buducnost hit 6 of 22 from three-point land and Arka was worse with 6 of 30. The visiting side missed 47 shots in total, but still came out with the win.
Buducnost travels to Galatasaray Doga Sigorta Istanbul in Turkey as it looks to get its first win of the season on Wednesday, October 23. Arka is on the road again in Italy to play Dolomiti Energia Trento that same night.
Wednesday, October 16, 2019