Difficult round for French clubs in the FIBA EuroLeague Women with three clubs losing.
Nothing is assured for the other French clubs after their reversals this week.
Mondeville 72-77 MiZo Pécs 2010
After the euphoria of the weekend’s victory at USVO, Mondeville was brought down to earth as they fell at home to their Hungarian rivals MiZo Pécs.
Mondeville are in fifth place in group D and require to win their remaining two matches and that either TEO Vilnius or Dynamo Moscow lose their remaining matches in order to progress in this competition.
Mondeville will travel to Moscow next week knowing that a defeat end their hope of qualification.
An efficient start from Mondeville put them in the driving seat as they raced into the lead (7-2) after a trey by
Caroline Aubert (above). Their guests from Hungary weathered the storm and drew level (7-7) with a trey from Zsofia Fegyverneky.
Both sides then played cat and mouse with each other for the rest of the first period with the guests taking the first period (22-19).
Poor free-throw shooting and lack of concentration during the second quarter allowed MiZo Pécs to take a 6-point lead going into the interval (46-40). During the third period Mondeville finally became more aggressive and briefly went in front.
The Hungarian side changed its defensive system and regained control of the game and held on to win (77-72).
Analysis of what went wrong for Mondeville: The game remained close throughout and Mondeville’s weakness in the paint was the deciding factor in this match. Emilija Podrug who played for Mondeville two seasons ago hit 8-of-12 field goals while the Mondeville pair of Meredith Alexis and Naura El Gargati only managed 3-of-12 between them from the field.
Without being able to alternate their options the home side reverted to 3-point shooting. Caroline Aubert and
Lenae Williams (left in picture) were successful in this exercise and finished with 16 and 17 points respectively. Pauline Jannault added to Mondeville’s total 14 points.
Yet these players were no match for the Hungarian top scorers: Fegyverneky and
Anna Vajda scored 19 points each, Podrug had 17 while Dalma Ivanyi scored 10 points and had 11 assists. Go back to the top of the EuroLeague Women Page.
CSKA Moscow 101-61 Villeneuve d’Ascq (24-10, 20-24, 34-13, 23-14)
When Maria Stepanova is on fire, then she is next to impossible to stop. In this match she scored 21 of her team’s 44 points in the first half of the match and finished with a game high 33 points. She also took 12 rebounds and dished out 6 assists during CSKA demolition of Villeneuve.
Kathy Wambe and
Ljubica Drljaca, both injured, did not play so Villeneuve were in trouble right from the start and were down 16 points early in the second period (26-10). Still they fought back and went on a 12-0 run (22-26). Villeneuve continued on their crusade and were within 2 points of the hosts after a Shala Crawford jump shot (30-32).
This was as close as they got as Maria Stepanova scored 9 of her team’s last 12 points as they went into the interval leading (44-34).
The second half of the match belonged to CSKA. They opened with a 9-2 run and never looked back to win by 40 points.
Other notable scorers for CSKA were Rebecca Hammon with 17 points, Ilona Korstin 16 and Olga Arteshina 10 points. Crawford led the scoring for Villeneuve with 19 points and was joined by Géraldine Robert on 14.
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USVO 66-71 Lotos (17-13, 15-16, 20-24, 14-18)
Slobodanka Maksimovic is well known to the supporters of USVO as she has spent the last three seasons playing for the club. In this match she scored the first points as her new side Lotus PKO went into an early lead (6-1).
Nicole Ohlde was the only USVO player in the first couple of minutes prepared to do anything offensively. She failed to score in her first three attempts but eventually got off the mark as she split a pair of free-throws. All her first period points came from the free-throw line.
Krissy Bade eventually put in a field goal for USVO but Chamique Holdsclaw hit consecutive baskets for Lotos as they maintained their early advantage (10-5) midway through the first quarter.
Sabrina Reghaissia started the USVO revival with a trademark 3-pointer. USVO went on to hit their guests with a 10-0 run.
With a trey Anne Breitreiner put a temporary stop to USVO. Francesca Zara completed the first period scoring as she hit her first 2 points of the match from the free-throw line (17-13).
USVO were confronted with an aggressive zone which they were unable to penetrate. Lotos quickly exploited USVO’s troubles as Breitreiner concluded a nice transition move.
USVO reverted to distance shooting with
Laurie Koehn and Camille Aubert both hitting 3-pointers (25-19). Lotus continued with their aggressive defence and with their well coordinated inside outside play between Breitreiner and Holdshaw they reduced the deficit (23-25).
The exchange of baskets continued for the rest of the period with the guests eventually levelling the score (29-29) through Maksimovic. Zara restored USVO’s advantage with her team’s third trey of the quarter (32-29) just before the interval buzzer.
A cautious start by both sides in the third period resulted in no score for almost 90 seconds. Katsiaryna Snytsina ended the deadlock and moments later Holdsclaw put the guests in front as the pace of the game increased.
Bade regained the advantage for USVO (34-33). This was the last time that USVO led in this EuroLeague Women game. Snytsina, very active during this phase, was at the centre of most of the action as Lotos attempted to pull away (42-38).
USVO managed to tie the game (42-42) after back-to-back baskets from Ohlde and Amelic Pochet.
USVO, struggling collectively, were able to remain in contact with individual actions from Gomis as the game was tied once again (49-49).
Dominique Canty, Holdsclaw and Snytsina continued to cause USVO problems as they held on to the lead (53-52) going into the final period.
Holdsclaw beating USVO single-handedly 10-2
Last summer Holdsclaw announced her retirement from the WNBA. For USVO they probably wished that she had extended her retirement to EuroLeague Women.
Lotus quickly took control of the final period with a 8-1 run (61-53). Maksimovic’s game ended prematurely with her fifth foul. Her departure did not stop Holdsclaw from beating USVO single-handedly 10-2 to open the first significant lead of the match (67-55).
USVO, forced to chase the game, went on the offensive. They also exploited the team foul situation of their opponents to reduce their deficit (63-68) as money-time approached.
The last 60 seconds turned into a comedy of errors from both sides. Lotus missed their shots while USVO kept turning the ball over. In the end all the remaining points came from the free-throw line with the guests from Poland holding on to win (71-66).
Holdsclaw finished the game with a double-double, 24 points and 12 rebounds. She also had time to dish out 3 assists, take 4 steals and make 2 blocks. Breitreiner, Canty and Snytsina all scored 13 points each.
For USVO Ohlde also compiled a double-double 17 points and 11 rebounds while Emily Gomis scored 13 points.
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EuroLeague Women pictures courtesy of the Ligue Féminine de BasketBall and FIBA Europe. Date: 10 January 2008