Romania - Liga Nationala Round 12: V. Bobrov, D. Ikovlev, Y. Lemyk, A. Kalnichenko

Craiova - Pitesti 77-75

A very close game took place in Craiova between Craiova and Pitesti. Sixth ranked Craiova (7-5) got a very close home victory over 9th ranked Pitesti (5-7). Craiova managed to escape with a 2-point win 77-75 on Sunday evening. The hosts trailed by 16 points after three quarters before their 25-7 charge, which allowed them to win the game. Craiova dominated on the defensive end, holding Pitesti to just 7 points in fourth quarter. The winners were led by American point guard Aaron Johnson (173-88, college: UAB, agency: Two Points) who scored that evening 15 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists and Serbian power forward Milivoje Bozovic (210-85, agency: Beo Basket) supported him with 15 points and 7 rebounds. Even 14 points and 8 rebounds by Serbian center Alexandar Mladenovic (207-84, agency: BeoExcell) did not help to save the game for Pitesti. American point guard Ronald Ross (188-83, college: Texas Tech) added 11 points and 10 rebounds. Both teams had five players each who scored in double figures. Craiova moved-up to fifth place. Loser Pitesti keeps the ninth position with seven games lost. Craiova will meet CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu (#7) on the road in the next round. Pitesti will play against Phoenix Galati and it may be a tough game between close rivals.
Top scorers:
Pitesti: V.Bobrov 17+2reb+3ast, A.Mladenovic 14+8reb+1ast, M.Pustozvonov 11+1reb+1ast, R.Ross 11+10reb+2ast, P.Stamenkovic 10+2reb+2ast, T.Jogela 6+4reb+1ast
Craiova: M.Bozovic 15+7reb, A.Johnson 15+6reb+6ast, B.Popescu 13+2reb, R.Pilcevic 12+3reb+5ast, C.Burlacu 11+5reb+1ast, D.Micic 5+1ast


Oradea - Steaua CSM 77-79

The most exciting game of round 12 in the Liga Nationala took place in Oradea. This derby game ended with only two-point home defeat of one of their biggest challengers Oradea (8-3) to second ranked Steaua CSM (8-2) 79-77 in the game for the first place. It ended at the same time the four-game winning streak of Oradea. It was a key game for the top position in the league. The guests trailed by 6 points after three quarters before their 26-18 charge, which allowed them to win the game. Strangely Oradea outrebounded Steaua CSM 39-27 including 17 on the offensive glass. They looked well-organized offensively handing out 23 assists. It was a good game for Serbian point guard Aleksandar Rasic (195-84, agency: Beo Basket) who led his team to a victory with 27 points and 5 assists. Serbian point guard Marko Marinovic (183-83) contributed with 16 points and 7 assists for the winners. American forward Sean Barnette (197-86, college: Wingate) replied with a double-double by scoring 20 points and 10 rebounds and Slovenian center Salih Nuhanovic (210-82, agency: 011 Sports) added 15 points and 8 rebounds in the effort for Oradea. Four Oradea players scored in double figures. Oradea's coach Cristian Achim tried various players' combinations and tested in total eleven players in this game, but that didn't help. Steaua CSM keeps a position of league leader. Oradea at the other side dropped to the second place with three games lost. They share the position with Targu Mures. Steaua CSM are looking forward to face CSU Sibiu (#4) at home in the next round. Oradea will play against BC Timisoara and is hoping to prove to their fans that this time they can win.
Top scorers:
Oradea: S.Barnette 20+10reb, S.Nuhanovic 15+8reb, U.Lucic 12+5reb+1ast, W.Franklin 10+5reb+8ast, R.Markovic 6+1reb+2ast, R.Pasca 4+2reb
Steaua CSM: A.Rasic 27+3reb+5ast, M.Marinovic 16+4reb+7ast, G.Lee 15+3reb+2ast, B.Amis 8+3reb+2ast, M.Paul 7+3reb+5ast, D.Ikovlev 6


Phoenix Galati - Rovinari 64-68

No shocking result in a game when eighth ranked CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu (6-5) beat on the road 10th ranked Phoenix Galati (4-8) 68-64. The guests started the game with a very strong first quarter 22-13. But Phoenix Galati won second period 17-16. However it was not enough to take a lead and get a victory that evening. The game was decided in the last minutes when CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu won last quarter 17-14. The best player for the winners was Serbian Lazar Radosavljevic (204-91, agency: Alti Sport) who scored 13 points. American point guard Jamar Diggs (188-88, college: Wofford, agency: Beo Basket) chipped in 10 points and 4 assists. CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu's coach Antonis Konstantinides used a ten-player rotation in such tough game. At the other side the best for losing team was Serbian forward Milos Pesic (205-84, agency: 011 Sports) who recorded 8 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists and Serbian swingman Milos Bojovic (198-81, agency: 011 Sports) added 14 points and 7 rebounds respectively. CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu have a solid four-game winning streak. They moved-up to seventh place. Phoenix Galati lost third consecutive game. Newly promoted team keeps the tenth position with eight games lost. CS Energia Rovinari Targu Jiu's next round opponent will be higher ranked Craiova (#5) at home and it may be quite challenging game. Phoenix Galati will play against Pitesti (#9) and it may be a tough game between close rivals.
Top scorers:
Phoenix Galati: M.Bojovic 14+7reb+2ast, Y.Lemyk 13+5reb+2ast, J.Threatt 11+3ast, D.Tresac 9+4reb+1ast, M.Pesic 8+11reb+4ast, A.Petica 5+4reb
Rovinari: L.Radosavljevic 13+4reb+2ast, J.Diggs 10+2reb+4ast, C.Eziukwu 10+3reb, L.Mack 8+5reb, S.Santa 8+7reb, P.Horne 6+2reb+2ast


Dinamo B. - U-Banca TR 75-85

The game in Bucuresti was also worth to mention about. Fifth ranked U-Banca TR (7-4) played at the court of 6th ranked CS Dinamo Bucuresti (6-6). U-Banca TR defeated CS Dinamo Bucuresti 85-75. It looked good early as CS Dinamo Bucuresti took a 5-point small lead at the end of first quarter. But then U-Banca TR had a 20-12 second period charge getting the lead and CS Dinamo Bucuresti was not able to take back game control losing it eventually 75-85. Worth to mention a great performance of American Kyndall Dykes (192-87, college: New Orleans) who helped to win the game recording 17 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 steals and Serbian-Bosnian point guard Filip Adamovic (181-88, agency: 011 Sports) who added 19 points during the contest. Dykes is a former Eurobasket Summer League player, which is considered top international summer league in the market. Four U-Banca TR players scored in double figures. U-Banca TR's coach Marcel Tenter allowed to play the deep bench players saving starting five for next games. The best for the losing side was Bulgarian Pavel Marinov (199-88, agency: Interperformances) with 25 points and Serbian center Nenad Sulovic (202-85, agency: Beo Basket) produced a double-double by scoring 15 points and 13 rebounds. Despite that victory U-Banca TR went down to sixth position due to points difference. Newly promoted CS Dinamo Bucuresti dropped to the eighth place with six games lost. U-Banca TR will play against bottom-ranked Gaz Metan (#12) in Medias in the next round where they are favorite. CS Dinamo Bucuresti will play on the road against Targu Mures (#3) and hopes to get back on the winning track.
Top scorers:
Dinamo B.: P.Marinov 25+3reb+2ast, M.Sutalo 22+3reb+2ast, N.Sulovic 15+13reb+1ast, D.Balaban 6+7reb, V.Corpodean 3+2reb+2ast, K.Babkauskas 2+2reb+6ast
U-Banca TR: F.Adamovic 19+2ast, K.Dykes 17+8reb+6ast, D.Hargrove 14+3reb, M.Pasalic 12+1reb+3ast, I.Zigeranovic 6+7reb+1ast, A.Kalnichenko 6+3reb+2ast