Leagues

Barcelona loses first Euroleague game

Bayern and Maccabi extend Euroleague streaks

The final two-round week of October continued on Thursday with an eventful opening to Round 7. Maccabi trampled Barcelona 85-68 for its fourth consecutive victory while handing last season’s runner-up its first loss. Milan took advantage by routing Crvena Zvezda 79-62 to join Barca atop the standings. Thursday’s lone road winner was Bayern, which beat ALBA 69-82 in the clash of German clubs for its third consecutive victory. And Kostas Sloukas provided the heroics for Olympiacos against his former team Fenerbahce in a 67-65 thriller. Five games complete Round 7 on Friday, including Real Madrid’s visit to UNICS, knowing it can also join the co-leaders if its wins on the road.

Barcelona loses first Euroleague game

ALBA Berlin 69-82 FC Bayern Munich

FC Bayern Munich extended its winning streak to three games by fighting through a sluggish performance and beating German rival ALBA Berlin 69-82 on the road. The game was tight until the end when Bayern drained four three-pointers in the final 2 minutes to finish a 7-18 run over the last 4:32 minutes. Darrun Hilliard poured in 25 points to lead Bayern while Nick Weiler-Babb scored 16 points – 10 of them coming in the final surge – and Othello Hunter collected 13 points and eight rebounds as Bayern improved to 3-4 on the season. ALBA saw Maodo Lo set a new career-high with 23 points, and Luke Sikma tallied 10 points, five rebounds, and four assists. But those two did not get enough help from the rest of the team, and ALBA dropped to 2-5.

Olympiacos Piraeus 67-65 Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul

Olympiacos Piraeus completed a perfect week in the Turkish Airlines Euroleague by beating Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul 67-65 at Peace and Friendship Stadium on Thursday night. Kostas Sloukas was the hero for the Reds, as he rescued his team when it trailed 59-62 with 8 points in a row, including the game-winning jumper with 2 seconds to go. Despite amassing a 13-point advantage in the second half, Olympiacos had to wait until the last possession to seal the win, as Fenerbahce recorded a 0-16 run bridging the third and the fourth quarter that brought the game to the line. The home team, which improved to 5-2 and remained perfect at home, had four scorers in double-digits led by Sloukas with 14. Tyler Dorsey, Giannoulis Larentzakis, and Moustapha Fall each netted 10 points. Jan Vesely paced Fenerbahce with 14 points and nine rebounds, while Nando De Colo and Marko Guridic posted ten apiece in the losing effort. Fenerbahce fell to 2-4 after collecting its third defeat in a row.

Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv 85-68 FC Barcelona

Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv dominated the first half and played composed basketball late to hand FC Barcelona its first loss of the season, 85-68, at Menora Mivtachim Arena on Thursday night. James Nunnally tallied 17 points and four assists, and Scottie Wilbekin had 16 points and five assists for the Israeli champs, who won their fourth straight game to improve to 5-2 while dropping Barcelona out of the sole position of first place at 6-1. Big men Jalen Reynolds and Ante Zizic added 10 points apiece for Maccabi, which led by as many as 22 in the second quarter and never let Barcelona get closer than 11 after that. Cory Higgins paced the Barcelona attack with 20 points, and Nikola Mirotic scored 17.

AX Armani Exchange Milan 79-62 Crvena Zvezda Belgrade

AX Armani Exchange Milan led from start to finish en route to dismissing visiting Crvena Zvezda Belgrade 79-62 on Thursday night at Mediolanum Forum. Milan improved to a 6-1 and a share of first place, while Zvezda suffered its third consecutive loss, dropping to 2-5. Milan scored the first 13 points of the night and led by 20 points before the end of the first quarter. Zvezda fought and turned the game into a highly physical battle, but the visitors never got closer than 9 points the entire game. Shavon Shields paced Milan with 18 points, Troy Daniels netted 12, and Kaleb Tarczewski added 10 in the winning effort. Luka Mitrovic led Zvezda with 17 points and seven rebounds, and Ognjen Dobric scored 13 for the visitors.

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