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Basketball: BBC Bayreuth closes the season with victory in front of its own fans

Bayreuth, 04-20-2024

After a miserable start, BBC Bayreuth defeated Gartenzaun24 Baskets Paderborn 88:78 in the BARMER 2nd German Basketball League Pro A.

The BBC started with Lenny Liedtke, Selim Fofana, Philip Jalalpoor, Aaron Carver and Esa Ahmad against the bottom club in the table from Westphalia, which still had a theoretical chance of staying in the league before the game began. Apart from the injured Marios Giotis, Bayreuth had its full squad for its last home game of the Pro A season.

Bayreuth's Head Coach Mladen Drijencic's motto was to move the ball under the basket. However, Paderborn, which was heavily short of substitutes, got off to a stronger start and quickly took a double-digit lead in the Oberfrankenhalle. Threes by Shane Gatling and Marco Rahn enabled the BBC to close the gap to 12:27 at the end of an indisputable first quarter.

However, the BBC got into the game better after the break and subsequently reduced the deficit by a number of points. A bucket from downtown by Moritz Plescher and a rare four-point play by Philip Jalalpoor meant the visitors were suddenly only 36:42 ahead. The visitors went in at half-time with a 43:39 lead and a meager four-point lead.

Lucas Mayer set the tone for the visitors with a three to make it 46:39 at the start of the third quarter. However, the BBC then took command again. Points by Philip Jalalpoor and Selim Fofana meant that Aaron Carver put Bayreuth 51:49 in front for the first time in the encounter with two free throws. In front of 2,729 spectators, the game now became an open exchange of blows, with both teams scoring regularly. The game remained on a knife's edge and the visitors led 57:56 after 30 minutes.

Selim Fofana put Bayreuth 67:60 in front at the start of the final period. Shane Gatling drained another three to give Bayreuth a double-digit lead for the first time after just under 35 minutes. Paderborn then embarked on a short 5:0 run to make it 67:74, prompting Mladen Drijencic to call another timeout. However, the game was decided for Bayreuth at the latest after Selim Fofana made it 81:71 with 81 seconds remaining. The BBC ultimately won by 88:78 and so ensured a conciliatory end to the season in front of its loyal home crowd. For Paderborn, the defeat means relegation to Pro B.

BBC Bayreuth faces Phoenix Hagen next Saturday, April 27, 2020, to round off the season. The team from North Rhine-Westphalia has already qualified for the subsequent playoff round.