Nizhny Novgorod defeated Astana in Kazakhstan, 85-73 (17-18, 17-20, 26-8, 25-27).
Astana: Justin Carter (20 + 7 reb), Leonidas Kaselakis (14), Anthony Clemmons (12)
Nizhny Novgorod: Jake Odum (29 + 7 reb), Stefan Jelovac (24 + 6 reb), Petr Gubanov (10)
Jake Odum erupted for 29 points and Nizhny Novgorod rode a dominant 3rd quarter to a key road win in Kazakhstan.
Astana actually outscored the visitors in every quarter but the 3rd, but an 18-0 run from Nizhny to end the 3rd quarter completely shifted the momentum and allowed Zoran Lukic’s club to pick up its 3rd win.
Odum knocked down five of seven 3-point attempts en route to 29, while Stefan Jelovac threw in 24 points, as the duo combined for 62% of Nizhny Novgorod’s offense.
Astana led by four at halftime, 38-34, and held a four-point advantage midway through the 3rd quarter. But a five-minute scoring drought coupled with red-hot shooting from the visitors put the team in a deep hole.
The home team did mount a comeback in the 4th, pulling within three, 66-63, with 6:08 remaining, but Odum answered with a pair of jumpers and two free throws to restore an eight-point lead and Astana never really threatened again.
Justin Carter led Astana with 20 points, but his 0-4 shooting from downtown was symptomatic of the team’s shooting woes (25% from beyond the arc, 38% overall).
With the victory, Nizhny Novgorod snaps a three-game skid and improves to 3-6, while Astana drops it fourth in a row and now sits 2-9.
Udanoh with the Finish
— VTB United League (@VTBUL) January 6, 2018
11-5 – Both teams shot below 50% on two-point attempts, but Nizhny Novgorod was able to make six more 3-pointers than Astana, a huge key to getting the win on the road.
Astana head coach Kostas Flevarakis:
– We’re integrating a new player right now, point guard Malcolm Grant. It’s a fairly lengthy, challenging process. We had trouble guarding Jelovac and Odum today and weren’t able to find a solution. We also need to improve our free-throw shooting. This is yet another game where we were worse than our opponent.
Nizhny Novgorod head coach Zoran Lukic:
– This was a huge game! Before the trip to Astana, I said we’d fight to the final second. The team lost a few unexpected games at home and I hope that this win gives us motivation in the future. The most important thing is that you could see some discipline on the court, especially in the 3rd quarter when we showed how a team should play and defend.
Astana: January 15 home vs. VEF
Nizhny Novgorod: January 14 home vs. UNICS