Another difficult round in EuroCup women for French clubs
Montpellier used only six players for their EuroCup match tie and lost (84-75) to Umana Reyer. Olga Podkovalnikova was the hero during the second half of the last year’s domestic regular season for Montpellier but has had a difficult time in finding her form this season and has been taken off the Montpellier fist team roster until the end of the year. A decision will be made during the Christmas break about her future at the club.
Montpellier’s main problem this season is holding on to their lead going into the final minutes of the games. They tend to try and compensate for that with good starts. On Wednesday they were leading after four minutes (12-6). Francesca Modica from the hosts had other ideas for her side as she hit 10 points for Umana Reyer’s last 16 points to draw level (22-22) by the end of the first period. The two teams continued their offensive festival during the second quarter with Montpellier holding the advantage until Aleksandra Vujovic hit a trey for the hosts 18 seconds before the half-time buzzer to take them into the lead (43-41).
Montpellier was never to regain the advantage again in this match and despite drawing level (45-45) after Grace Daley found a way of getting the ball to Sandra Dijon who finished off the moves with a jump shot. This moment was the closest Montpellier ever got to troubling their opponent. The two sides traded basket for basket for the majority of the third quarter with the home side going into the final period up (63-59).
When Vujovic hit another trey for Umana Reyer (80-70) with three minutes left in the game the writing was on the wall for Montpellier. They struggled in money-time, as usual, allowing their hosts to remain unbeaten and win their EuroCup group Gunta Basko is definitely back on form as she played for the whole match and finished with 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Tarbes unbeaten run in this seasons EuroCup has come to an end after they lost to Nadezhda (68-57). Tarbes struggled early on in the first period but managed to stay in contention after Kristen Mann scored 5 points for them to close in on the hosts (18-16). Tarbes remained aggressive for the first six minutes of the second period and briefly led (27-26).The hosts then went on the war path and finished with an 11-2 flourish to go into the break (37-29).
Tarbes fell further behind during the third quarter (60-44) but managed to put a 9-0 run early in the fourth period (60-53). This was as close as they came as the hosts paced themselves to victory.
On Thurday evening the two remaining clubs from the Ligue Féminine de BasketBall in the FIBA Europe EuroCup played against club sides from Italy and came away with mixed results.
Challes-les Eaux lost (81-66) to Cras Basket, Tarranto, while Aix-en-Provence recorded the only victory for a French club sides this week in Europe after they won (76-60) against Lavezzini Basket, Parma.