Now it's a fact. After being promoted again in 2010 and then 13 years in the easyCredit Basketball Bundesliga, medi bayreuth has been determined as the first team to be relegated in the 2022/23 season. After the 96-102 defeat on Wednesday evening at home against the MLP Academics Heidelberg, Bayreuth's basketball players can no longer make the leap to the saving 16th place in the standings.
In front of 2,305 spectators in the Oberfrankenhalle in Bayreuth, medi bayreuth had big problems with the high intensity of the Heidelberg team, especially in the first half. The team of Head Coach Joonas Iisalo showed a strong game and deserved to win in the end.
It took a while before the first medi points started to fall, but when Otis Livingston managed a steal in the second minute of the game and then successfully dunked the stolen ball, the ice was broken. An open exchange of blows developed, with the lead changing seven times in the first ten minutes. At first, it looked as if medi could pull away a bit at the end of the first quarter with a 6:0 run. But a last-second throw by Jack McVeigh from beyond the 6.75-meter line found its target, so that it was even going into the second game unit.
The start of the second quarter clearly belonged to the guests. They quickly took a comfortable lead with a 12:0 run. medi had big problems both offensively and in defense in this phase. The team of guest coach Joonas Iisalo grabbed significantly more rebounds and was able to pull away to 49:39 after twenty minutes.
Otis Livingston II & Co. fought back with all the means at their disposal after the change of ends, but they could not get closer than five points to their opponents. Again and again, the Heidelberg team found the right answer to medi's successful moves and finally went into the last quarter with a 79:70 lead.
In the last ten minutes of the game, medi tried everything again to avert the impending defeat. However, the Heidelberg team always knew the right answer to every Bayreuth run and continued to control the game. They left the floor with a deserved 102:96 victory.
Mladen Drijencic: "Coach Iisalo and his team really showed great character today. They dominated us in the first half and made the right decisions again and again. Heidelberg hit the difficult shots and scored important points under time pressure, while we left simple things under the basket. In the end, we have to realize that we sealed our own fate today."
Next Sunday, 30.04.2023, the team will face the Rostock Seawolves team in the course of the 32nd matchday. Start in the StadtHalle Rostock is at 15:00.