ANDhe MoraBanc Andorra broke a streak of four consecutive defeats in the Endesa League and this Saturday won the first of the ten remaining finals to avoid relegation. David Eudal’s men, with a great Moussa Diagne (13 points, 5 rebounds and a PIR of 20) beat Surne Bilbao Basket 82-71 thanks to a 16-6 run in the last quarter that was key to the local victory.
The start of the match was dominated by the defenses and also by nerves. Much was at stake for MoraBanc, who went the first two minutes without scoring, until they achieved their first advantages with a +6 (13 to 7) with a partial in favor of 8-0.
Two consecutive three-pointers from Clevin Hannah and two points from Oriol Paulí gave the Principality’s team some air. Surne Bilbao responded with a run from 0 to 7 that put them ahead. The entrance of Rousselle and Inglis was key for those of Àlex Mumbrú. The first quarter ended with a triple by Álex Reyes to make it 15-17 and in the last stretch of the first quarter the best explanation for Andorran anxiety was reflected with two shots under the rim missed by Víctor Arteaga and Mario Nakic.
The staging of Surne Bilbao in the second act put the locals on the ropes. The partial from 2 to 8 was the maximum advantage for Mumbrú’s men with 17 to 25. David Eudal’s men learned their lesson and improved defensively. A partial from 16 to 5 with 2’00” before the break put the Andorrans ahead again with 33 to 30 with special prominence for David Jelínek with two triples.
Two consecutive hits by Goudelock from the 6.75 line woke up Surne Bilbao and four consecutive points by Miller-McIntyre took the game to half-time with the match tied 37-36. The defensive improvement revived a MoraBanc trapped by anxiety.
After the break, the two teams decided to face a game of exchange of blows, both in defense and attack. That yes, Surne Bilbao Basket was only ahead with 41 to 42. David Eudal’s men resisted in attack with the success of ‘Drew’ Crawford with six consecutive points. There were no big differences in the score, but from 55 to 50 it went to 58 to 58 with a run of 3 to 8 by Mumbrú’s men. A triple by Álex Reyes closed the third quarter.
A partial of 16 to 6 of MoraBanc that began with an adverse 60 to 62 was providential to win the game. MoraBanc, with a defense to the limit, started the quarter with a triple by Hannah and closed it with one by Jelínek. At 2’43”, the result was 79-68 with a triple by Moussa Diagne.
Surne Bilbao was totally trapped in the spider web created by the Andorran coach. The best of the game was Moussa Diagne with 13 points, 5 rebounds and a PIR of 20, but the top scorer was David Jelínek with 18. The best for Surne Bilbao was Damien Inglis with 20 points and a PIR of 23.
82- MoraBanc Andorra (15+22+21+24): Hannah (13), Jelínek (18), Oriol Paulí (10), Conor Morgan (3) and Moussa Diagne (13) -starting quintet-; Amine Noua (2), ‘Tunde’ (2), Miller-McIntyre (4), ‘Drew’ Crawford (6), Mario Nakic (7), Víctor Arteaga (2) and Nacho Llovet (2).
72- Surne Bilbao Basket (17+19+22+14): Rafa Luz (7), Goudelock (10), David Walker (-), Masiulis (10) and Ángel Delgado (8) -starting quintet-; Rousselle (4), Peno (1), Withey (6), Álex Reyes (6), Inglis (20) and Tomeu Rigo (-).
Referees: Juan Carlos García González, Jorge Martínez and Andrés Fernández. Without eliminated.
Incidents: Match from matchday 24 of the Endesa League at the Andorra Sports Center with 3,370 spectators.