Venice comes back but loses by a whisker

Almost in a photocopy of Game 1, Umana Reyer manages to come back from -22 to take the lead and have final possession for the victory, but it is still Segafredo Virtus, this time without overtime but by just one point (79-78) in the 40′ to win Game 2, with the orogranatas who will now be forced, on Wednesday 29th at 8.45pm at Taliercio, to win to continue the series.

Kabengele is not yet able to return, even if coach Spahija decides to change two fifths of the starting five, fielding Spissu, Tucker, Parks, Wiltjer and Tessitori. From the start, however, it’s a Virtus monologue: 7-0 and the Venetian time out immediately after 1’30”. Tessitori unlocks the orogranata, but in the 4th minute it is 14-2. Not even Tessitori’s and one again in the middle of the quarter changes the inertia: even for the coach Heidegger it reaches 22-5 at 7’30”, then it’s 26-7 at 8’30”, with a small partial reaction that sees the redemption of Heidegger, author of the team’s first triple at the sixth attempt to close the first quarter at 28-15. De Nicolao’s triple to make it 28-18 which opens the second quarter seems to suggest a possible change of plot, also because the orogranated defense leads the opponents to lose a couple of balls. But the attack doesn’t work and coach Spahija times out again in the 13th minute at 35-18. Belinelli lights up (38-20 at 14′) then the Umana Reyer defense finally manages to block their opponents, even if the attack continues to struggle (at 20′ it’s 2-17 from 3!) and as soon as Tessitori puts in a the character on 38-24 (16’30”) there is the ready Bolognese time out. The match becomes rougher and Belinelli drags Virtus to 45-26 at 18’30”, in a final in which Tucker finally manages to enter the game, suffering three fouls in as many penetrations and partially eliminating with precision from the line at 47 -30 at long interval.

In the quintet, at the restart, compared to the first half, there is Heidegger for Wiltjer and Segafredo updates the maximum margin to the 21st minute (32-20). Two triples from Spissu try to give a shock (53-36 at 22’30”), then Virtus returns to 57-36 at 24′, even if the physical quintet chosen from the orogranata bench manages to put their opponents in difficulty, with the comeback up to 57-44 in the 27th minute after Shengelia’s fourth foul. The break is closed by Polonara’s triple, then Pajola also spends the fourth infringement, but an assist invented by Belinelli for Mickey pushes coach Spahija to time out at 62-45 at 27’30”. The inertia, however, has changed and, after Parks’ basket and Tucker’s dunk on the counterattack from injury time, comes Mascolo’s unsportsmanlike foul (4th foul for him too) and De Nicolao from the line, Simms and Tucker score the 62- 55 at 29′: -7 which is confirmed at 64-57 again by Tucker in the last possession of the period.

Little was scored in the first 2 minutes of the final quarter: only 2 free throws by Shengelia, who then committed his fifth foul on Simms, who was also precise from the line. Parks’ reverse dunk assisted by De Nicolao and Simms’ basket bring the lead back to 68-63 at 33’30”. After the team’s 14th offensive rebound (against 3) De Nicolao brings Umana Reyer even closer to 69-65 at 34’30”, then coach Spahija calls a time out in the middle of the quarter at 71-65 and at 36′ coach Spahija imitates him Banchi after Casarin’s triple of 72-70. Point after point, they also overtake the score at 73-74 in the 37th minute on the Spissu-Parks axis. Casarin goes out due to fouls (only one free throw for Cordinier and the tie is at 74), but Umana Reyer continues to suffer fouls and it’s 74-76 in the 38th minute. However, we get to the last 77 seconds tied again, at 76-76. At -58″, after the time out, it’s 76-78 scored by Parks, who fouls Hackett at -37″: the first one is wrong, the second free throw is inside and 77-78, but at -20″ it comes Tucker’s offensive foul on Cordinier is called, so after the time out Bologna has the last possession and with 4″ tenths from the end there is a foul by Simms on Cordinier’s penetration: from the line it’s 2/2 and 79-78 . With no more time outs, Umana Reyer relies on Tucker’s speed, but the final defense of Cordinier and Hackett prevents 59 from shooting in good time, so Virtus also wins Game 2.

Coach Neven Spahija made no statement at the end of game 2.

Virtus Segafredo Bologna vs Umana Reyer Venezia 79-78 (28-15, 47-30, 64-57)

Virtus Segafredo: Cordinier 10, Belinelli 14, Pajola 5, Dobric, Mascolo, Shengelia 5, Hackett 9, Mickey 9, Polonara 11, Zizic 2, Dunston 9, Abass 5. All. Banchi.

Umana Reyer: Spissu 6, Tessitori 9, Heidegger 6, Casarin 3, De Nicolao 11, Janelidze ne, Kabengele ne, Parks 14, Brooks 2, Simms 14, Wiltjer, Tucker 13. All. Spahija.

Ugh. Umana Reyer print

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