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28.02.2008 22:22

Convincing win (86-57)

Sònia de Alba

AXA Barça put on a show as they eased to victory against Lottomatica Roma in the Palau on Thursday evening and took another stride towards qualifying for the Quarter Final Play-Offs in Group G.

The Blaugrana are joint top alongside CSKA Moscow thanks to the commanding performance that began with a basket from Jordi Trías and continued unabated until the end. With a defined game plan and a zonal defence, Barça caused their Italian guests problems throughout with Fran Vázquez, Ilyasova and Basile all shining in the win.

Easing in

QM3D6027.jpgIn the early exchanges, Lottomatica actually took a 4-5 lead when Ukic netted a three-pointer, before Lakovic scored his first shot of the night and Mario Kasun sunk a free throw. Former Blaugrana star Gregor Fucka then added his name to the scoresheet, but that came just as Barça were easing into their stride. Kasun enjoyed a two-handed power dunk and Vázquez followed that up with a slam shot.

Lottomatica were struggling to score and Basile and Vázquez continue to shine as they made free throws before the former beat the buzzer with a shot from seven metres out that put the hosts 30-11 into the lead at the first stoppage.

Hawkins comes good

QM3D5949.jpgThe visitors failed to score for almost six minutes after missing 16 consecutive shots and committing two turnovers as Barça extended their lead with Grimau scored from distance.

That run by Lottomatica extended to ten minutes as Trias capped a 23-0 run for Barcelona before Hawkins sank foul shots and Lorbek scored to help the visitors restore some pride.

Barça were 41-25 ahead at the break, but the tables turned slightly as the Rome-based club embarked on a run of 18 points scored without conceding. That pulled the visitors to within ten points of their hosts at 41-31.

Comfortable finish

But it would have taken a collapse of some proportions to see Barça lose the game from that position and Basile netted again before Pepe Sánchez and Acker both added to the score to force Lottomatica to call a timeout. Ilyasova then made a huge block on Ibrahim Jaaber which lifted the Blaugrana and Acker again pushed the home team further ahead with free throws.

QM3D5984.jpgLeading by 19 points going into the final quarter, Barcelona tried to slow the game down to try and prevent Lottomatica launching another strong comeback. Ukic's foul allowed Lakovic to make free throws to take the score up to 61-40 with just eight minutes of the gme remaining. Vázquez and Acker then sealed the outcome with further points.

After points from Lakovic and Basile, the visitors saw Fucka disqualified and the game continued with the same rhythm as before until the end as Barça cruised to victory.
Convincing win (86-57)

Basile (19), Trias (8), Lakovic (17), Acker (9), Kasun (5) – starting five – Sánchez (3), Marconato (4), Neal (2), Vázquez (9), Ilyasova (4), Moncasi (-), Grimau (6)

Fucka (7), Ray (-), Crosariol (2), Ukic (11), Hawkins (18) – starting five – Tonolli (2), Stefansson (-), Lorbek (12), De la Fuente (3), Gabini (-), Jabeer (2)

Quarters: 30-11; 11-14; 18-15; 27-17

Referees: Brazauskas, Ankarali, Gontas

Click here to see the official match statistics

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