One breath short of getting a second victory
Olympiacos touched victory in Siena but one rebound, one assist, one small detail did not allow that he leave once again a winner from the Siena home court. The Italians won 81-80 and now the series moves to Piraeus for the next couple of games.
The “reds” began with concentration and clear thinking in both defense and offense, but quickly saw Dorsey and Hines having three fouls each. That was decisive for the game since the Italians found the way to broaden the difference that even reached 17 points to finally close at +13 at the end of the first half.
The “reds” once again found their good selves in the beginning of the second half and closed to a seven point game. However, the Italians did not panic and led by 14 at the end of the third quarter. The fourth quarter was a lot like the first game in Italy. The Ivkovic’ players played great defense and Printezis, Law and Hines led their team mates in offense. Gradually, the “reds” closed the game and the score was 81-80 only 7 seconds to the end with two free throws by Printezis. Olympiacos quickly made a foul on Rakosevic who missed two free throws and Printezis got the rebound, without however having time to try for an offensive play.
Τhe quarters: 22-18, 48-35, 67-53, 81-80
Per quarter: 22-18, 26-17, 19-18, 14-27
Siena (Pianigiani): ΜcCalebb 21(2), Ζisis 4, Andersen 12(1), Rakosevic 13, Carraretto, Thornton 2, Lavrinovic 18(2), Ress 2, Stonerook 2, Μoss 7.
Οlympiacos (Ivkovic): Hines 9, Antic 11(1), Spanoulis 7, Dorsey 7, Κeselj 9(1), Papadopoulos 4, Gecevicius, Printezis 15(2), Papanikolaou 7(2), Μantzaris, Sloukas, Law 11.
DUSAN IVKOVIC: This game was similar to the first one, but I think we controlled the game better on Wednesday. I think that the three fouls made by Hines and Dorsey in the first half cost us. The second half was very much alike the second half on Wednesday. We lost due to a detail, a shot, a rebound. I’m happy with my team because we showed to have character to the last second and I think the games to come are going to be very difficult.
I don’t know why for the second year in a row the same people spit on us and throw coins against us. I believe it’s organized. In Spain, fans wait for us to sign them autographs, you know about the relationship between Greece and Turkey and yet they applauded for us. Tonight I had to grab a towel and clean after spit. There was no protective glass. I have friends all over Italy but I still cannot explain this. Tell me if I have done something wrong so I stop doing it. Have you seen me provoke anyone, act in a bad manner? These people were calling me a “Serbian killer”. Italy is in heart, I’m sorry for my reaction but I feel terrible. Even if we had won, I would still be saying the same. I have no problem whatsoever with the players or the coaches. I’m expecting very difficult quality games.
ΚYLE HINES: We only played well at the end of the game. We had the chance to win but did not make it. Many mistakes did not allow us to find rhythm. I believe in the team, we play very well in the Peace and Friendship stadium and I think we are going to win two games with the help of our fans.
SIMONE PIANIGIANI: It was a very big game. I spoke yesterday with my players and told them it would be once again a very tough game because Olympiacos would be ready to play with energy and brains for forty minutes. I asked them to do the same for forty minutes, we did not but we controlled the game. We allowed the Olympiacos players score and get bonus free throws, while the opponent was fouling us and did now allow us to score. The quality of the games to come is going to be even better. Our goal for the next games is to control them and stay close to the end. I’m proud for my players and we are heading for two big games in Piraeus.