MKB Euroleasing Sopron and Beretta-Famila Schio stayed alive during Friday’s Game 2 of Euroleague quarterfinal series, while UMMC Ekaterinurg advanced with a 2-0 sweep.
Sopron shook off a lopsided opening-game loss to play Ros Casares Valencia tight at home in Hungary in Game 2. Storm draft pick Tijana Krivacevic was the biggest reason why, bouncing back with 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting and five rebounds. The teams were tied at 70 inside the final minute before Katalin Honti split two free throws with 28 seconds left to give Sopron the lead for good. Zane Tamane added an insurance free throw to produce the final 72-70 margin. Rebekkah Brunson had 23 points and 13 rebounds for Ros Casares, while Katie Douglas scored 16 points and grabbed seven boards. Jana Vesela had just one point in 18 minutes.
Sparta&K Moscow Region and Schio also went right down to the buzzer. Epiphanny Prince made a three with 21 seconds left to pull Sparta&K within one, but after a putback by Isabelle Yacoubou-Dehoui, Schio was able to foul Taj McWilliams with time running out. McWilliams intentionally missed the second attempt, but Sparta&K could not get the ball back for a shot to tie or win. Prince scored a game-high 26 points, with Taj McWilliams (11) the only other Sparta&K player to reach double-figures. Sue Bird had six points and handed out her lone assist on Prince’s late three. Yacoubou-Dehoui paced four Schio players in double-digits with 19 points. Janel McCarville had 11 points and nine boards.
Both teams will return home for the deciding Game 3 of the series next Wednesday. Ekaterinburg, meanwhile, gets to rest up after beating Rivas Ecopolis 83-74. It was hardly easy for the Russian power, which needed overtime after Ekaterinburg’s Celine Dumerc tied the game with 34 seconds left in regulation. In the extra session, Rivas Ecopolis made just one shot in eight attempts, allowing Ekaterinburg to win going away. After playing a key role in Game 1, Svetlana Abrosimova saw just two minutes of action as Ekaterinburg turned to other players from its arsenal of stars. Olga Arteshina and Cappie Pondexter scored 19 points apiece, with Pondexter adding seven rebounds and seven assists.
The EuroCup is already in the quarterfinals, where Elizur Ramla got off to a great start with a 78-54 blowout win in the home leg of the two-game aggregate series. Gran Canaria will need to win Wednesday’s return match by at least 25 points to win the series. Le’coe Willingham dominated Gran Canaria in the paint, scoring 23 points and grabbing 21 rebounds – 12 on the offensive end. Tanisha Wright flirted with a triple-double, scoring nine points, coming up with eight rebounds and handing out eight assists. Shay Doron also scored 18 points for Ramla. Katherin Ress provided much of Gran Canaria’s production, finishing with 19 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.