Eurocup Last 32: Round 4 action

There was a packed night of Eurocup Last 32 action on Wednesday as the whole of Round 4 was played throughout Europe.

There was plenty of chance for teams to progress to the eighthfinals but only one could make it through, with Khimki Moscow Region becoming the first team to book a place in the next phase. However, the Russian team could be joined by ALBA Berlin if the German club can overcome Khimik Yuzhne after their game was postponed on Wednesday due to adverse weather conditions.

Group I

French club JSF Nanterre slipped to its first defeat in the Eurocup Last 32 by falling on the road to Ratiopharm Ulm. The German club pulled off a comfortable 86-72 victory to move equal with Nanterre at 3-1 in Group I, although the French club stays top. Ulm´s win was on the back of an impressive first and third quarter and the team was helped by Philipp Schwethelm with six from beyond the arc and 21 points.

Pinar Karsiyaka picked up its first win at this stage of the competition by downing Foxtown Cantu 93-80 at home. Esteban Batista propelled the Turkish club to victory with 30 points and 11 rebounds in an outstanding personal performance. Both teams remain alive for qualification with 1-3 records.

Group J

Dinamo Banco di Sardegna Sassari came back from the brink to close out BCM Gravelines 94-95 away from home. The Italian team looked down and out in the fourth and was trailing 83-75, but a turnaround in the dying minutes and a game clincher from Omar Thomas secured the win. Sassari moves to 2-2 in third place in Group J, while Gravelines slips to last place with 1-3.

Despite 84-94 defeat at home, German club Brose Baskets Bamberg stays alive in the group in second place with a 2-2 record. Aykon TED Ankara Kolejliler downed Bamberg to secure top spot in the group with a 3-1 record as the Turkish club celebrates winning seven of its last eight Eurocup games.

Group K

Khimki Moscow Region became the first club to progress from the Eurocup Last 32 to the eighthfinals as the Russian team claimed a cruising 106-85 home win over CEZ Nymburk. Khimki is the only team with a 100% record after four games, although ALBA Berlin could join the Russians on that record. Moscow Region is now 13 unbeaten in the Eurocup and is surely one of the favourites to clinch the title at the end of the season.

Italian champions Montepaschi Siena picked up its first win of this stage by defeating Maccabi Haifa Bazan 92-73 at home. Matt Janning led the way for Siena with a blockbuster 34 points, while he also hit seven from downtown.

Group L

Nizhny Novgorod swept past last season´s beaten Eurocup finalist Bilbao Basket 81-65. An 18-0 run first half run gave the hosts control of the game as they kept Bilbao at bay for the rest of the contest. The Russian club moves to the top of Group L with a 3-1 record, while despite losing Bilbao stays alive in third and 2-2.

Greek team Panionios Athens is eliminated from the Eurocup Last 32 after a 66-78 home defeat against Crvena Zvezda Telekom Belgrade. The loss means Panionios is the only team not to pick up a win so far in the Last 32 and the club stays at the bottom of the group with a 0-4 record. Rasko Katic was the catalyst for the Belgrade success with 19 points.

Eurocup Last 32

Group M

It was a late show from Budivelnik Kiev as the Ukrainian team edged Hapoel Jerusalem 96-93 in a tense finale. A win for Jerusalem would have sent the Israeli team into the next round, and the visitors were looking good with a four point lead in the final minute. However, the hosts kept in touch and kept cool to see Dajaun Summers nail from beyond the arc before later claiming a couple of free throws and the win.

Banvit Bandirma moved ahead of Kiev on head to heads after beating Union Olimpija Ljubljana 81-65. The Turkish club now occupies second in Group M with a 2-2 record, while Olimpija stays last with 1-3 after failing to ever get into the contest.

Group N

Radnicki Kragujevac gunned down Strasbourg 92-82 at home in a clash between the bottom two in Group N. The win moved Radnicki off the basement and into third with a 1-3 record, while Strasbourg slipped to last with an equal record. The other game of the night between ALBA Berlin and Khimik Yuzhne was postponed due to bad weather in Ukraine.

Group O

Unics Kazan responded to last week’s disappointment to collect a narrow win over Telenet Ostend at home, 69-63. Andrew Goudelock scored nearly half of the home team´s points with a 27 point haul as he paced the team through a tough contest. The Russian team moves into first place in the group with a 3-1 record.

Stelmet Zielona Gora picked up a vital win by defeating Valencia Basket 82-77 in Poland. The Polish champions kept their chances of qualification alive by picking up its first win of the Last 32 to go 1-3 at the bottom of Group O. The hosts won the game in the last 40 seconds to send Valencia to a record of 2-2 in second place.

Group P

Cedevita Zagreb bounced back from two consecutive defeats to beat Besiktas Integral Forex Istanbul 55-58. It was a typically dramatic ending for Zagreb as the team held on in the dying embers of the game after trailing for most of the contest. The win keeps Cedevita in third place with a 2-2 record, while Besiktas remains third at 3-1.

Lietuvos Rytas sent CAI Zaragoza to the bottom of Group P with a comfortable 87-75 home win. The hosts secured a 13-0 run in the fourth while shutting out Zaragoza for seven minutes in the final 10 to claim the win. Martynas Gecevicius had 22 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists for the winning team.

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