With a 94-83 away win at ratiopharm Ulm, Brose Bamberg remains unbeaten in the Basketball Bundesliga and shares the top spot in the table with promoted MLP academics Heidelberg. Bamberg was not impressed by the 5,000 Ulm fans, after the second half (44:45) playmaker Justin Robinson and top scorer Christian Sengfelder (27 points) in particular turned up the heat.
Brose Bamberg had to play the away trip in Swabia without Frankie Ferrari, the playmaker asked the club to terminate his contract for health reasons. "Even before he signed with us, he was thinking about ending his career. Frankie had also rejected our first contract offer in the summer. I regret his decision very much," explained coach Johan Roijakkers. Until Bamberg has found a new point guard, Justin Robinson must now lead the game almost alone. The US-American, who is only 1.73m tall, did that almost perfectly in Ulm: Robinson was on the floor for 34 minutes, showed his best performance of the season with 21 points and 12 assists (with only one ball loss!). In contrast to the games before, Bamberg only had one weak phase. At the beginning, Roijakkers' team lacked accuracy, with six of the first seven shots missing the target. However, Bamberg did not let Ulm pull further away than the 2:9 after four minutes, and with two three-pointers in a row by Christian Sengfelder, Bamberg was back in it, 25:27 after quarter one. In the 14th minute Kenneth Ogbe threw Bamberg in front for the first time (34:33), until the break (44:45) the lead changed six times.
Like a turning point in the game was the Bamberg attack in the 22nd minute: first Christian Sengfelder reduced the four-point deficit to 48:50 with a basket, but the captain missed the bonus free throw. Center Martinas Geben grabbed the offensive rebound, Trevis Simpson passed out to the free-standing Justin Robinson and the point guard nailed his second three-pointer of the game. Five Bamberg points in one offensive sequence, that was inspiring: winning the ball behind, Trevis Simpson (9 points) hit the next three-pointer, Robinson added another one from distance. Thanks in part to the 11-0 run, Bamberg led 66-63 after quarter three. Ulm reduced the lead to 68:67 at the beginning of the final quarter, but the congenial duo Robinson-Sengfelder understood each other almost blindly: Sengfelder converted six of the American's 12 assists into points, twice exactly in this phase with a basket to make it 72:67. Patrick Heckmann, who returned to Bamberg from Ulm this season, added six of his 14 points and Bamberg took the lead with a 12:0 run to 80:67. Bamberg countered every successful throw by Ulm with points - especially with the two almost casual distance throws from almost nine meters by Justin Robinson, only the nearly 50 Bamberg fans could be heard in the ratiopharm Arena.
Johan Roijakkers (head coach Brose Bamberg): "I congratulate my team on a fantastic victory. To win in Ulm, with the great atmosphere with so many supporters, is not easy. We were there from the beginning, defended the three-point line very well. I think we scored 20 points off offensive rebounds in the second half of the game, we did that well. Then we also had Justin Robinson, who ran hot in the fourth quarter and controlled the game well. It was a team effort, everyone who played was able to contribute."
The top game in the Basketball Bundesliga will take place on October 17, 2021, when league leader and newcomer MLP Academics Heidelberg will host second-place Brose Bamberg.