It was supposed to be an easy game but a mediocre performance by Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv resulted in the need of a great effort in the final minutes to assure Maaccabi's 5th win in the "Top 16". 83-75 over Cibona VIP Zagreb.
With five minutes to go the hosts led 69-64. Then a three pointer by Sharp made it 69-69. Vujcic & Baston scored the next 10 pts and Saras & Parker closed things up from the free throws line.
Both teams found it difficult to score in the first quarter ((16-10 for Maccabi). By half time Maccabi had a lead of 44-35 and increased it to 50-35. But a series of turnovers and poor shooting, enabled the Croats to go on a 14-1 run, and take a 55-54 lead after a technical foul on coach Pini Gershon.
At the end of the third Maccabi had a 59-57 lead and increased it to 62-57. Then they got stuck again and Cibona ran 12-2 to open a five points lead. Then came the final surge with Maccabi going on a 19-6 run in the final five minutes.
Maccabi shot 50% from the peremeter (5-10) and Cibona only 27% (4-15). Maccabi had an advantage in rebounds (35-30) and assists (19-12). Both teams recorded 19 turnovers.
Anthony Parker & Tal Burstein were top Maccabi Players. Parker scored 15 pts in 67% FG and 100% in FT, 5 rbds, 6 ass & 3 stls. Burstein had 11 pts, 5 ass, 4 rbds & 3 stls.