medi Bayreuth ended the second group stage in the FIBA Europe Cup with a commanding home victory. The team of Head Coach Raoul Korner, which was certain of finishing top of the group and so advancing to the playoffs before the final game day, defeated the ten-times Belgian champions Spirou Basket Charleroi 100:89 (54:39) in the Oberfrankenhalle on Tuesday evening.
After a fiercely contested first period, the crowd of 2,083 was able to sit back and relax. The HEROES OF TOMORROW really stepped up the pace in the second period to take a clear 54:39 lead at half-time. The team of top scorer Reid Travis (18 points) also had total control of the encounter in the second half and did not let its fifth win in the second group stage slip out of its hands. medi’s Head Coach Raoul Korner was even able to use his team’s dominance to spread the time on court over all 12 players and so spare them a little before the upcoming German league game against SYNTAINICS MBC on Friday.
The HEROES OF TOMORROW have about 24 hours to wait after their final group game to see who finishes second in Group J and will be their opponent in the playoff quarter-finals. That will be decided on Wednesday in the games involving group leaders Tsmoki-Minsk from Belarus against fourth-placed CSM CSU Oradea from Romania and second-placed U-BT Cluj Napoca from Romania against the third-placed Israeli club Ironi Ness Ziona.
After an evenly balanced first period, the HEROES OF TOMORROW went on to produce another extremely strong all-round team performance, in which six players got into double-digits. No matter which of his regular players Raoul Korner put on court, the HEROES OF TOMORROW clicked as a team, notching up 26 assists. In addition, Bayreuth’s bench players were able to outclass their counterparts from the Belgian club and ended up winning the bench point duel by 42:22. All in all, Bastian Doreth and his teammates produced a very mature display and were in control of the game at all times from the second period onward.
James Woodard injected zest in his team’s play at the outset. The shooting guard chalked up ten out of his haul of 16 points (in a total of 19:28 minutes on court) in the first period and so showed the way. His teammates kept on looking for him and setting him up nicely – and he capitalized on his chances. It was then the turn of Reid Travis to step up to the plate: He cleaned up pretty well below the baskets and so finished with a double double (18 points and ten rebounds), as well as the best efficiency rating (22) of all players on court.
Evan Bruinsma also snapped up a total of ten rebounds and so ensured Bayreuth clearly dominated that department. In the end, Bayreuth won the rebounding duel 45:30 (and 14:7 in terms of offensive rebounds).
Evan Bruinsma from medi Bayreuth commented: “We’re very relieved to have won. All in all, it was a good all-round team performance. Of course, we’re delighted to qualify for the next round and now are eagerly waiting to see who our next opponent is.”
The HEROES OF TOMORROW face their next encounter in the easyCredit German Basketball League this Friday, February 7, when SYNTAINICS MBC from Weißenfels visit the Oberfrankenhalle on the 19th game day. The tip-off is at 8:30 p.m.