Zenit defeated VEF on the road in Game 3 of the quarterfinals, 92-51 (29-25, 23-9, 16-9, 24-8).
VEF: Martins Meiers (10+8 reb), Alex Gordon (10), Kristopher Richard (9+5 reb)
Zenit: Kyle Landry (20+5 reb), Janis Timma (15+6 reb), Aaron White (13+5 reb), Stefan Markovic (12+6 reb+5 ast)
The series moved to Riga, with Kyle Landry returning to the Zenit lineup after missing the first two games in St. Petersburg. The Canadian big man played a part in the visitors’ 13-4 run to start the game, though Riga was able to get within four points at the end of the 1st quarter.
Landry was even more productive in the 2nd quarter. Zenit put on a defensive clinic, limiting the home team to nine points, while Landry cruised into halftime with 16 points, guiding his club to a 52-34 advantage. Stefan Markovic (9 pts + 4 asts) and Aaron White (11 pts) were also big contributors.
Despite the big lead, Vasily Karasev’s men never lost focus in the second half. Zenit fought hard for every loose ball in the 3rd quarter, once again holding VEF to less than 10 points to open up a 25-point lead, 68-43. The visitors went on to win by 41 points, giving up a measly 17 points in the second half.
Zenit moves on to the semifinals, where it awaits the winner of the Khimki – Enisey series.
Kyle Landry. He had a huge impact in his return, scoring 20 points to give Zenit a comfortable close-out win.
VEF vs Zenit Game 3 one minute highlights 📽 pic.twitter.com/4dv0PbfnRG
— VTB United League (@VTBUL) May 6, 2017
9 – number of points VEF scored in both the 2nd and 3rd quarter.
VEF head coach Janis Gailitis:
– Congratulations to Zenit on reaching the semifinals. We had a decent series, but Zenit was the favorite and proved it on the court. We were disciplined and more guys played the way they’re capable of in previous games. A lot of things didn’t work out today.
Zenit head coach Vasily Karasev:
– After two very tough games in St. Petersburg, we were very motivated coming to Riga. We played extremely well on defense today, giving up only 51 points. We played like a team. VEF had trouble with its rotation. Now we have time to recover and prepare for the semifinals.