U18 ALBA Berlin grabbed its second victory at the Euroleague Basketball Adidas Next Generation Tournament Ljubljana by defeating U18 Basket Brno 65-68 and will play for third place in the event. ALBA came back from 13 points down and scored the final nine points of the game to finish Group B play with a 2-1 record. Rikus Schulte led the way with 19 points and 7 rebounds, Nils Machowski collected 16 points and Linus Ruf chipped in 11 points and 9 rebounds. Brno dropped to 1-2 in the group despite Jakub Necas scoring 19 points to go with 9 rebounds and 3 assists while Simon Svoboda scored 12 points.
ALBA comes back to beat Brno for second win
Lukas Olbort’s two free throws started the scoring for Brno with two Machowski foul shots giving ALBA its first lead 2-3. Josef Svoboda hit a three-pointer at the other end and a triple from Adam Lukes made it 12-9. Machowski answered from deep but Necas scored four points and the Czech side led 18-14 after 10 minutes. Jan Polivka knocked down two three-pointers and the lead grew to 26-16. Two scores from Martin Studnicky increased the margin to 32-20 and Matej Rychtecky’s three-pointer had Brno up 37-24. ALBA finished the first half in better fashion and trailed 41-32 at the break.
The German side continued the momentum in the second half with the first five points. After failing to score for more than 3 minutes, Necas picked up two baskets and Rychtecky’s triple pushed the lead to 48-39. ALBA fought back with a 2-11 run to even the game 50-50. Simon Svoboda answered with a three-pointer and Brno was up 57-53 after 30 minutes. Brno could not find a rhythm in the fourth quarter, going scoreless for the first 6 minutes and Machowski pushed ALBA ahead 57-59. Necas finally scored for Brno and he added an and-one and dunk before Simon Svoboda’s free throw for a 65-59 lead with under 2 minutes to play. ALBA went scoreless for more than 5 minutes but Machowski drained back-to-back three-pointers from the left corner to even the game 65-65 with 42 seconds left. After Rapieque split two free throws with 26 seconds remaining, Polivka turned the ball over and Schulte converted two from the line with 5.2 seconds left to secure the win.