Cedevita make the first step towards finals
Cedevita have edged out Partizan NIS in the first game of the semi-final series, at home in Dom sportova Hall in Zagreb. The home side made the decisive margin already by the middle of second quarter and had no problems maintaining it until the end.
ABA League Playoffs, Semi-finals, Round 1, 18.3.2017:
CEDEVITA – Partizan NIS 83:76 (25:17, 29:18, 16:24, 13:17)
Game recap: Cedevita are the ones that have taken the 1:0 lead in the semi-finals against Partizan NIS, as they have proven their quality early in the game and then demonstrated their supremacy until the end of the clash by easily controlling the flow of the score. The thing that determined the flow of the game significantly was the early injury of Partizan NIS starting center Uroš Luković, who injured his ankle in the first minute and was carried out of the hall before the end of the opening quarter.
Key moments: Partizan NIS were still in the race for the opening game win until the 14th minute, when Cedevita were up by seven points. What followed was the 10:0 run by the home side over the next two mintues of the game, where John Shurna scored all 10 of their points. The margin has gone up to 17 points (44:27) and the winners were clear at that moment. Furthermore, things got even worse for the guests by the beginning of the second half, when the score was 58:35 (23 points of margin).
Partizan managed to get closer, to one digit deficit, in the second half, but never really threatened Cedevita’s win. The closest they got was in the 39th minute, when the score was 76:71. However, Marko Tomas’ free-throw and a three-pointer by birthday-guy Filip Krušlin led Cedevita to the safer zone (80:71) with a minute and a half remaining. The hope was gone for the visitors.
Man of the match: John Shurna was not only the one that pushed Cedevita forward when it mattered the most and created the crucial run for his team, but he also led the way in scoring for his team throughout the game with 15 points on his record. He added 6 rebounds to his stats and ended the game with a valuation of 17 points. He is our man of the match.
Can’t trick the stats: Withouth Uroš Luković on the court Partizan NIS could not resist Cedevita properly in the paint and this is evident from the post-game stats as the home side outrebounded the guests with 36:24 in rebounds. This is what influenced the final outcome of the game vastly.