EuroLeague Women perfection for 5 clubs with 3 wins
Spartak Moscow Region opened the third round of the EuroLeague Women competition with a road victory against Fenerbahce (88-74). Once again Diana Taurasi was the star of the match with 29 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists.
Mixed fortunes had the three French clubs all playing at home with 1 victory and 2 defeats.
Frida Eldebrink (left) hit 7-of-9 from behind the arc and scored a total of 23 points. But it was not enough for Tarbes as they lost (62-70) to Frisco Sika Brno.
Villeneuve d'Ascq also lost (71-77) to Wisla Can-Pack, while Bourges Basket cruised past MKB EuroLeasing (82-56).
In the other EuroLeague Women games played on Wednesday starting with Group A, Ros Casaras, with Becky Hammon making her début, beat UMMC Ekaterinburg (87-68).
TTT Riga lost at home to Cras Basket (59-70).
ZVVZ USK Prague beat KSSSE AZS-PWSZ Gorzow (96-79) in Group C.
MiZo Pécs 2010 lost the first game on Thursday evening to last season’s finalist Halcon Avenida (60-69). Galatasaray remain unbeaten after a comfortable victory against TEO Vilnius (82-55).
Rivas Ecópolis go top of Group C after beating Good Angels Kosice (74-58). In the remaining games Lotos Gdynia beat Szeviép (74-61), while Beretta-Famila defeated Gospic Croatia (91-76)
Five clubs are unbeaten with 3 wins from 3 matches, Spartak Moscow region still has one game to play.
In the final quarter Spartak Moscow Region were not having it all their way and were trailing (68-66).
Diana Taurasi (left) then stepped on the accelerator and provided the perfect pass to Edwige Lawson-Wade who hit a rainbow three-pointer.
30 seconds later, Taurasi found Anete Jekabsone-Zogota in almost the same position as Lawson-Wade.
Jekabsone-Zogota did not waste the opportunity and fired in a three-pointer for her side to go in front (72-70).
However Taurasi was not finished: she managed to get Nicole Powell to foul her twice while going for three-point shots.
Taurasi said thank you very much and went 6-from-6 from the free-throw line.
With five minutes to play Spartak Moscow Region were 10 points clear (80-70) and not to be troubled for the rest of the game. They went on to win (88-74).
Fenerbahce have a strong EuroLeague Women roster and made things difficult for Spartak Moscow Region.
They made 24 trips to the free-throw line and connected 21 times. Yet they finished with just 3-from-16 from beyond the arc.
Penny Taylor and Powell led the scoring 21 and 19 points each for the hosts.
Taurasi was the player of the match with 29 points, 6 assists and 7 rebounds. She was also credited with 7 turnovers.
Jekabsone-Zogota (right) fired in 18 points. Three other players from Spartak also finished in double digits with Sylvia Fowles, Janel McCarville and Lawson-Wade with 13, 12 and 10 points apiece.
Tarbes suffering EuroLeague Women defeat at home
Tarbes scored on their very first attack through Anne Breitreiner with less than four seconds on the game clock.
Yet Hana Horakova (19 points and 5 assists - left in picture) replied on the next attack for Frisco Sika Brno.
Eva Vitecková (10 points) and Horakova were very active for the guests as they moved ahead (6-3) with just over two minutes played.
Isabelle Yacoubou-Dehoui was battling at both ends of the court for Tarbes.
She scored inside the paint before handing over the offensive duties to Frida Eldebrink, who scored twice from beyond the arc as Tarbes regained the lead (10-6).
Horakova was unstoppable during the first period and added 8 points to her tally as Frisco Sika Brno won the first quarter (20-14).
The guests stepped on the turbo at the start of the second period and scored 6 points within 60 seconds to open up the first significant advantage of the game (26-16).
Tarbes fought back with the energy of Yacoubou-Dehoui and the three-point shooting of Eldebrink to reduce the deficit to 4 points(27-30).
Hollie Grima who joined Brno this week scored for the guests from behind the arc and drew a foul. She hit the free-throw to complete a 4-point play.
Fatimatou Sacko and Charde Houston struggled to make an impact so François Gomez decided to give them a rest.
Yacoubou-Dehoui was in her element in the paint and Eldebrink scored once again from behind the arc as the hosts chased after the game (31-34).
The coach from Frisco Sika Brno, Jan Bobrovsky, called for a time-out to break the rhythm of their hosts.
Tarbes drew level with a trey from Breitreiner and went into the locker room leading with an Eldebrink three-point buzzer beater (37-34).
Frisco Sika Brno came out of the locker room more focused and quickly made up their deficit as the two teams traded baskets.
The guests went in the lead for good (44-41) after back to back scores from Vitecková and Taj McWilliams (12 points and 7 rebounds) with three minutes played in the third quarter.
Gomez called a time-out and made some changes. But nothing was working and the guests with McWilliams and Petra Kulich (12 points) moved 10 points clear (53-43).
Houston and Arrondo scored the last points of the third quarter as Tarbes reduced their deficit (47-53) going into the final quarter.
Brno opened the scoring in the final quarter and Sacko finally scored her first points of the game for Tarbes in reply.
Another trey from Eldebrink got the home fans on their feet. However Mc Williams was on hand with back to back scores to keep the guests in front (59-54).
Arrondo was taken off and Florence Lepron came back in the game. She quickly scored and Houston finally found her scoring touch. Yet it was too late because the clutch shooting from Horakova and Dewanna Bonner kept the guest in front.
Frisco Sika Brno held off the final attacks to win (70-62).
Lepron finished the game with 6 assists and is amongst the EuroLeague Women assists leaders. Eldebrink scored 23 points while Houston and Yacoubou-Dehoui finished with 12 points each.
Lotos Gdynia beat Hungarian club Szeviép (74-61) with Magdalena Leciejewska and Shameka Christon scoring 17 points each in the last game of Group D.