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medi Bayreuth captures second win of the German league season against Braunschweig

Bayreuth, 11-10-2019

medi Bayreuth produced a magnificent first half to lay the foundation for its second victory of the season on the seventh game day of the easyCredit German Basketball League. The team of Head Coach Raoul Korner defeated Basketball Lions Braunschweig by 95:89 (49:33) on Sunday afternoon to chalk up its second win in its sixth game in this season’s domestic campaign.

Fight and commitment were also needed against a strong Braunschweig side since, after trailing by 16 points at the break, the club from Lower Saxony staged a furious comeback. However, medi Bayreuth was able to strike back impressively after various strong spells by the visitors and so maintain the lead and run out deserved winners.

Evan Bruinsma produced a particularly composed and clinical performance in front of 3,203 spectators in Bayreuth’s Oberfrankenhalle on the afternoon and finished up as the game’s top scorer with 23 points.

As in its recent encounters in Frankfurt and against Nicosia, medi Bayreuth got off to an extremely focused start. Linhart and his teammates managed to put Head Coach Korner’s game plan into practice almost to perfection in the first two periods. medi Bayreuth dominated the first half. The HEROES OF TOMORROW were very solid in defense in particular and hardly let the opposing side score any easy points. They again moved the ball very well in offense, exploited the chances offered to them with good shooting percentages all round, and so consequently led by the clear margin of 49:33 at the break.

Braunschweig switched to zone defense at the start of the second half, which reaped immediate rewards. medi seemed to lose their head for a brief time, kept on dribbling into trouble and allowed Braunschweig to capitalize on those very mistakes and turn them into easy points. As a result, the Lions put a hefty nine points on the board in a little over two minutes. By the 24th minute, medi’s lead had almost evaporated (50:46) and the game was completely up for grabs again. The brows of medi’s fans grew more furrowed in the 28th minute when Andreas Seiferth was punished for an offensive foul after making a block for Nate Linhart. A heated exchange of words with Braunschweig’s Thomas Klepeisz also earned him his fourth foul, this time a technical one. However, Evan Bruinsma put an abrupt end to the Lions’ buoyancy. After stealing possession from Klepeisz, the power forward was the victim of an unsporting foul by Eatherton. Bruinsma made his free throws and medi was also able to hold onto the lead by the end of the third period.

Both teams continued to trade blows in the final period. Whereas Braunschweig’s Thomas Klepeisz and Joseph Lawson gave an impressive demonstration of their qualities as long-range shooters, the team of Head Coach Raoul Korner repeatedly found someone who was able to extinguish the fresh fire in the visitors’ play as soon as it flared up. In particular James Woodard and Evan Bruinsma ensured medi’s victory in the final two minutes. Evan Bruinsma, who grew in strength as the game went on, first drained a shot from outside to make it 87:81 with 106 seconds to go, then James Woodard parried the prompt response from the visitors (a three by Klepeisz) with a further three with just one second left on the shot clock to restore medi’s six-point lead with 61 seconds remaining and so seal a deserved victory.

Bastian Doreth (medi Bayreuth) commented: “We put our game plan into action, especially in the first half. We then had a few problems in the second half, especially against the zone defense, but I think that all in all we were able to solve that well and won deservedly in the end. The key to success was that we were able to match Braunschweig’s intensity and were equal to it physically. It was also important for us to win the rebounding duel; after all, Braunschweig is the league’s second-best team in that department.”

Yet after the game is before the game, as they say, and so medi Bayreuth has to focus right away on its next encounter: Its final home game in the group stage of the FIBA Europe Cup this Wednesday, November 13, when the Latvian club BK Ventspils visits the Oberfrankenhalle cauldron (tip-off: 8 p.m.).