BBC Coburg has lost its third successive game in the BARMER ProB South 2nd German Basketball League after an 81:92 (40:55) defeat on the road at Basketball Lions Erfurt. That means Coburg still has to wait to secure a spot in the playoffs.
Things did not only go against Coburg in Thuringia’s capital, but also at other venues on this game day in the ProB: Munich and Frankfurt, two teams who are contending for a playoff berth, won and so reduced the gap between them and the BBC. Moreover, Hanau ousted it from third place in the table. Things could hardly have gone much worse for Coburg, which still has to wait to seal its long-cherished hope of qualifying for the playoffs.
It was clear from the tip-off that the visitors would find the going tough in front of 1,500 spectators in the Riethsporthalle arena. Both sides lacked the necessary intensity in defense and so an offensive fight ensued, in which Coburg led by 21:18 – after just five minutes! The home side repeatedly posed problems for the BBC, especially with its strong shooting percentage from downtown, and took a 30:26 advantage by the end of the first period.
In particular, Erfurt’s recent signing Adam Thoseby kept on irritating and finding gaps in the visitors’ defense. Moreover, Coburg’s actions in offense were spread over few shoulders, with Tidjan Keita, Daniel Urbano and Princeton Onwas doing most of the work. Apart from that trio, no other Coburg player scored in the second period, in which the Lions were able to pull away further and further and leave the BBC trailing by the clear margin of 40:55 at half-time. Coburg’s Head Coach Ulf Schabacker was visibly displeased: “You can’t go into a game like we did today – anyone who thinks we can simply tag along and score a few threes is in store for a rude awakening.”
Schabacker’s players stayed in the dressing room for a long time, as there was a lot to discuss. And that talk reaped rewards: The BBC slowly tightened up its defense and Keita was able to cut the deficit to single digits from the foul line midway through the period (54:62 in the 26th minute). Yet Coburg repeatedly squandered its chances from the foul line, whereas Adam Thoseby continued to produce a dependable performance for Erfurt. The wing kept his side on track with a three and an assist for a further bucket from beyond the arc to lay the foundation for a 61:76 lead going into the final period.
There was no faulting the BBC’s fighting spirit now, as it produced a 7:0 run to reduce the deficit to 70:78 in the 35th minute. The just over 100 Coburg fans furiously fired their team on again and Constantin Ebert and Sven Lorber closed the gap to 81:85 with one minute left – Coburg suddenly sensed there was a chance to turn the game around. However, Thoseby went down the other end to set up Lucas Wobst for a three, after which Lorber failed to score – the game was decided.
“How we fought in the second half was OK. We’ve now lost on paper against the bottom-of-the-table team, but if Erfurt had played this way the whole season with this lineup, it would definitely be higher up in the league,” was how Schabacker paid tribute to the opposing side.
BBC Coburg now faces its next big game this Saturday evening, when Baunach Young Pikes come to the Lauterer Höhe for an Upper Franconian derby.