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s.Oliver Würzburg defeats Mitteldeutscher BC by 84:77

Würzburg, 03-09-2019

s.Oliver Würzburg has kept itself in the race for a playoff spot in the easyCredit German Basketball League with a home win over Mitteldeutscher BC. 2,966 spectators in the s.Oliver Arena on Saturday saw an encounter that was evenly poised for just over 27 minutes, after which the home side produced a run of 12 points without reply at the end of the third period to capture a decisive lead. The game’s top scorer was once again Xavier Cooks with 19 points.

The visitors came out with a lot of energy and fight, but also benefited from the home side’s poor shooting percentage before the break, when – with the exception of Jordan Hulls’ attempts – even open shots often did not want to drop. “You could see that we were a bit tired and some players coped with the stress of the trip to Russia better than others. After a tough start and a difficult spell in the second period, however, the players did a very decent job,” said Head Coach Denis Wucherer afterwards.

After an evenly balanced first period, the MBC was able to open up a largish gap at the start of the second period with four buckets from downtown in a row – forcing Wucherer to call a timeout in the 16th minute with the score standing at 22:29. His team’s defending improved after that and the comeback got underway. It began with a putback dunk by Xavier Cooks and ended with a three by Jordan Hulls as the shot clock ran down to give his side a narrow 36:35 lead at half-time.

The game ebbed merrily to and fro for quite a while after the break: The first 11 buckets by both opponents resulted in the lead changing hands each time. In the 26th and 27th minute, the visitors from Saxony-Anhalt were able to pull four points ahead again through two threes by Hans Brase and Jovan Novak (51:55 in the 27th minute). It was then left to the “Würzburg Warrior” Felix Hoffmann to initiate the game’s crucial spell with a lay-up to make it 53:55: s.Oliver Würzburg produced a 12:0 run up to the end of the third period to take an eight-point cushion in the final quarter.

“I have to pay my team a big compliment for how it turned the game around in this phase, got the crowd behind it and, backed by the emotions in the arena, went on to take victory,” said Wucherer. At the latest when Gabriel Olaseni tested the goal system’s strength with a mighty slam-dunk to make it 63:55 on the last move of the third period, the fans were no longer able to remain seated.

In the final quarter, the home side was quickly able to open up a double-digit gap (73:60 in the 34th minute) and then play out its deserved victory in commanding fashion. s.Oliver Würzburg now has 11 wins and 11 defeats and so remains in striking distance of the playoff spots in the easyCredit German Basketball League.