Serie A – Serie A league leaders Montepaschi Siena were shocked at home on Thursday as the Italian Serie A reconvened after Christmas for Round 12 of the Regular Season. The current 7-time consecutive champions lost to JuveCaserta on a day that also saw second placed Banco di Sardegna Sassari fall to a road loss against Virtus Roma.
Indeed, Roma was the only team in the top five to secure a win as Enel Brindisi and Cantu also lost on the road to leave the top of Serie A the same as it was after Round 11.
Montepaschi Siena vs. JuveCaserta, 60-81
League leaders Montepaschi may have been the dominant force in the Italian Serie A over the last seven years but the team was caught cold on Thursday. In fact the players must have still had their minds on Father Christmas as they were humiliated at the Palasport Mens Sana Arena. Visiting team JuveCaserta put 21 points on the champions to move to eighth place in the league with a 6-6 record. Montepaschi came back down to Earth after defeating second placed Sassari in Round 11 but still holds on to top spot in the Serie A with a 9-3 record.
The visitors controlled much of the game on their way to a comfortable road win, while Montepaschi could only win the third quarter. Jeff Brooks (203 cm, Penn State´11) helped JuveCaserta to victory with 19 points and 7 rebounds, while fellow American Stefhon Hannah (185 cm, Missouri´08) was also in good touch 14 points, 6 rebounds, and 8 assists in the game. Despite losing, Erik Green stood out in a poor Montepaschi performance with a game high 26 points.
An important Christmas period for Montepaschi will continue on December 29th when the champs travel to fourth place Enel Brindisi. JuveCaserta will have the chance to disrupt the top of the Serie A table when they host second placed Banco di Sardegna Sassari.
Virtus Roma vs. Banco di Sardegna Sassari, 72-68
Montepaschi´s loss went unpunished by second placed Sassari as the team fell to a road defeat against third placed Virtus Roma. The home team has quietly gone about business in recent weeks and won five of the last six to rectify a poor start to the season. The team now stands in third place in Serie A with an equal 8-4 record with Sassari, while the losing team is enduring a difficult Holiday Season with a second consecutive loss to a top three team after losing to Montepaschi in Round 11.
Banco di Sardegna Sassari will be worried about recent form while heading to Montepaschi´s conquerors JuveCaserta in Round 13. Roma will aim to go from strength to strength as the capital city club travels to Giorgio Tesi Group Pistoia.
Serie A – Round 12
Sutor MGR vs. Pistoia, 87-93
Libertas Pesaro vs. Reggio Emila, 66-99
Cimberio Varese vs. Bologna, 98-89
EA7 Armani Milano vs. Vanoli CR, 81-66
Umana Reyer Venezia vs. Cantu, 84-79
Avelino vs. Brindisi, 85-83