Round 11 of the ABA League 2016-17 regular season recently concluded with nothing less than a showcase of impressive basketball play by league leading Crvena Zvezda Telekom Beograd. The red and white shirts managed a convincing road win over Slovenia’s Union Olimpija Ljubljana. They are on fire this season and are now 11-0 with the 67-85 victory. Ognjen Kuzmic was a rebound shy of an huge double-double with 20 points and nine boards to lead Red Star. Brandon Jefferson paced Union Olimpija with 18 points and five assists. The loss keeps Union Olimpija at 10th place in the standings (3-7).
Karpos Sokoli vs. Cedevita, 89-81
One of the more interesting games of Round 11 happened over the weekend. FYR Macedonian club Karpos Sokoli 2000 Skopje grabbed its second win over the season. Much to the delight of a home crowd, cheering them on, Karpos Sokoli managed to turn in a big upset over fourth ranked KK Cedevita Zagreb. This is a harsh reminder that the ABA league is very competitive and top teams cannot afford to rest on their laurels. Dragan Zekovic blew up for a game-high 23 points to lead Karpos Sokoli for the win. Newly signed Ryan Boatright dropped 23 points of his own for Cedevita. Unselfish play was the key to victory in this game Karpos Sokoli had 21 assists compared to 12 for Cedevita.
FMP vs. Buducnost, 69-77
KK Buducnost Voli Podgorica did not skip a beat this round and remain hot on the heels of Crvena Zvezda. Buducnost managed to secure a road win as well. They led from start to finish in a convincing 69-77 win over FMP Beograd. Boris Savovic turned in a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. FMP was the better sharpshooting team, making 12-of-36 shots from 3-point range, but Buducnost was able to turn up the defense in the fourth quarter as FMP mounted its final push and staved off a comeback by the hosts.
Partizan vs. Mega Leks, 86-79
BC Partizan jumped into third place (8-3) with this win. The game was relatively close for the most part, but Partizan’s dominance on the glass (37 rebounds) was a big difference maker. They had 16 offensive boards, compared to six by Mega Leks. William Hatcher led a balanced attack for Partizan with 16 points. Uros Lukovic double-doubled with 12 points and 10 boards. The game was exciting and action-packed. Mega Leks (4-7), now at ninth place, should regroup and will be looking to string some wins together and make a move towards the Top 8.
Other game results of Round 11:
Cibona vs. Zadar, 82-73
Igokea vs. MZT Skopje, 79-72
Mornar Bar vs. Krka, 86-73