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Unbeaten record in the playdowns continues: Coburg defeats Cologne

Coburg, 04-07-2019

BBC Coburg remains unbeaten in the HUK-COBURG-Arena in the playdowns in the BARMER ProB South 2nd German Basketball League: One week after winning at home against Dragons Rhöndorf, the BBC followed that up with a 95:85 (46:28) victory against bottom-of-the-table RheinStars Cologne on Sunday afternoon.

Coburg was able to call on the services of Andy Rico again, but the real surprise was that Head Coach Ulf Schabacker put Christoph Bauer in the starting five. “He stepped on my foot a few times in the soccer session after the last game and I liked that attitude,” was how the Head Coach explained his tactical move tongue in cheek, only to add more seriously: “He’s earned that over the whole season, and today he made important shots and defended well at the back.”

However, his side began sluggishly even with the guard: Three minutes elapsed before Christopher Wolf put the first points on the board for the BBC, but then Bauer followed that up with a bucket from downtown to make it 6:2 – and a short time later the home side was even 10:2 in front. The game gradually picked up pace toward the end of the first period, which ended with Coburg leading by 15:9 after two free throws by Yasin Turan.

The home side then stretched that gap uncompromisingly in the second ten minutes: Midway through the quarter, it was 28:17 ahead and then a three by Bauer made it 36:23 in the 16th minute – the vociferous chants by the Cologne fans who had made the journey were of no avail. Their side was mainly kept in the game by the American Tucker Haymond, who notched up 15 points by half-time. However, none of his teammates had made more than one bucket up to then and so the BBC took a very commanding 46:28 lead and good vibes in with it at the break.

The second half started with a bang – Cologne’s fans celebrated their team’s first points with confetti cannons. Yet Coburg continued to dominate after that: A four-point play by Dino Dizdarevic was followed by a free throw from Kevin Franceschi to put the BBC ahead by 20 points for the first time (57:37 in the 24th minute). As a result, the one or other player on the home side seemed to be lulled into a false sense of security – Coburg now appeared to be a touch too negligent and allowed Cologne to reduce the deficit to 66:53 going into the final period.

And Cologne kept on fighting: It was not until the 34th minute that Schabacker called his first timeout of the evening, since the RheinStars had clawed their way back to 73:63 and were threatening to catch up further. However, a three from the corner by Christopher Wolf to make it 82:69 with three minutes remaining as good as sealed the encounter. Although the already relegated visitors did not concede any easy points up to the final buzzer and fought as if they still had a chance to avoid demotion, BBC ran out winners.

“Unfortunately, we got a bit slack and sloppy at the end, allowed them to make too many threes and, at the other end, didn’t look to make that extra pass, but instead were too greedy. But all in all that was OK. We’re now looking forward to the final game next week.”