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31.01.2009 22:10

Impeccable second half (81-67)

Carles Cascante

Regal Barça produced a strong second-half display to defeat Gran Canaria in the 21st game of the ACB season after the two sides were very evenly matched in the opening two quarters of the game.

The Blaugrana added another victory to their sequence as they made it 17 wins from 20 matches with a determined performance in the Palau Blaugrana on Saturday. Basile stood out at the back for the home team while Ilyasova and Vázquez impress going forward alongside the ever-reliable Juan Carlos Navarro. Sada and Barrett also stood out.

Ilyasova shines

QM3D1281.jpgWhile Barça may have won the first quarter, the fact is that it was a very even affair with the visiting players doing well and showing a determined spirit that saw them control the offensive rebounds as well as playing well down the middle. That was the key reason why they were able to go into the second period just three points behind on 20-17.

Ilyasova was the best player for the hosts in the opening quarter as he netted seven points, but he was unable to command the defensive rebounds and that allowed Savane and Augustine to force three 2+1's for the Canary Island outfit.

Bounce back

A triple from Barton opened the second period (25-17), but the visitors stepped up their game and began to use the width well as Sanders scored to move his team to within three points of Barça. Minutes later and English also netted to pull Tenerife to within just one point at 30-29.

QM3D1272.jpgThen, 48 seconds before the break, Daniel Santiago produced a fourth personal foul and coach Xavi Paschal opted to put on Fran Vázquez. Tenerifre then netted eight points without reply to actually take a 38-41 lead as the Blaugrana began to flag. The tiring encounter in Madrid in midweek was having an effect and Santiago fouls and Lakoic's absence did not help. Navarro though refused to let his head drop and he sent a triple in to see the scoreboard read 43-42, only for the visitors to net a quick two-pointer to lead at the break.

Raising the game

After the restart, Paschal's players raised their game and changed things around completely to produce a run that saw them score 13 unanswered points, which included two triples from Ilyasova and one from Sada. That gave the Blaugrana big 12-point lead with just five minutes left of the third quarter. The hosts' defence improved notably with Vázquez in outstanding form. But the Canaary Islanders again mounted something of a comeback and they scored seven points of their own to make the score 59-53. Barrett then came into his own and his run saw Barça push back out and go into the last quarter leading 68-55.

Good defence

QM3D1389.jpgBasile's great defensive display against English set up the rest of the Barça team to be able to play the fourth period with confidence. Vázquez continued his good form, while Ilyasova and Barrett also stood out. Anything that Tenerife tried was thwarted and Barça were able to complete an impressive win.

Impeccable second half (81-67)
Regal FC Barcelona (20+23+25+13): Sada (3), Navarro (21), Basile (6), Ilyasova (15), Santiago (-) –starting five-, Vázquez (17), Barton (5), Barrett (4), Trias (4), Grimau (2) i Andersen (4).

Kalise Gran Canària (17+27+11+12): Norris (6), English (5), Moran (-), Augustine (16), Savane (11) –starting five-, Moncasi (7), Fisher (8), Kickert (2), Sanders (8), Fernández (4).

Quarters: 20-17 / 23-27 / 25-11 / 13-12

Referees: Martín Bertran, Redondo and David Soto.

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