Astana Dominates Avtodor In OT, Grabs 7th Win

Astana Dominates Avtodor In OT, Grabs 7th Win

Astana Kazakhstan defeated Avtodor Russia at home, 100-83 (14-20, 20-25, 22-17, 22-16, 22-5).

Top Scorers
Astana: Geoffrey Grosselle (26 + 8 reb), Anthony Clemmons (24 + 5 reb + 9 ast), Ken Horton (19 + 7 reb), Michael Jenkins (15 + 5 ast)

Avtodor: Trae Golden (19 + 11 ast), David Kravish (16 + 8 reb), Anthony Ireland (13)

Astana overcame a 14-point 3rd-quarter deficit, before ultimately seizing control in a lopsided overtime. 

Avtodor came into the contest with a worse record (4-5), but after stunning Zenit a week earlier. the Russian visitors played with confidence in the first half, building an 11-point lead by the break, 45-34. 

Trae Golden, who finished with a team-high 19, was the star for Avtodor in the first half, recording 13 points and six assists. 

Dusan Alimpijevic’s men led by as much as 14 early in the 3rd quarter, before the tables suddenly turned. 

Three triples in a little more than a minute cut Astana’s deficit to seven, 55-48, as the home team quickly restored intrigue in this match-up between two of the League’s hottest teams. 

The 4th quarter was a doozy. Trailing 62-56, Astana quickly took its first lead of the second half behind five points from Geoffrey Grosselle, including a huge three-point play. 

The American big man was clutch for the home team, scoring 13 of his game-high 26 in the 4th. Thanks to a pair of Groselle lay-ups, Astana led by four, 74-70, with two minutes to go.

But Avtodor battled back. David Kravish nearly won the game in regulation, scoring on three consecutive possessions to put the visitors on top, 78-76.

With 12 seconds remaining, Astana guard Stephen Holt found Grosselle cutting to the basket and Kravish was forced to foul, sending him to the line for the game-tying free throws. The big man converted, and Golden missed a chance to win it for Avtodor at the buzzer, forcing overtime.

Surprisingly, the extra period was over almost before it began. Astana ensured its second-half comeback was not in vain, scoring the first 10 points of the period thanks to a pair of 3-pointers from Anthony Clemmons and Ken Horton and stingy defense that forced turnovers on Avtodor’s first two possessions. 

Avtodor never had a chance, ultimately losing by 17, 100-83. 

The victory improves Astana’s record to 7-3, good for 4th in the standings. Avtodor remains in 8th place with a 4-6 record. 

7 – Astana matched last season’s win total before Christmas. 

Astana head coach Emil Rajkovic: “First of all, I want to express my gratitude to both teams, because the game was hard-fought and finished in overtime. We won mostly because our team showed toughness and a fighter’s mentality. We weren’t very good at the start of the game. We kept trying to find our rhythm and at the end we managed to do it. This win was very important for us before the New Year. We will go on break in a good mood.”

Avtodor head coach Dusan Alimpijevic: “First of all, I want to congratulate Astana and their head coach. The team is playing really excellent basketball this season. I imagine this was a big win for them. We played very poorly in the second half, which was not true in the first. We were good defensively in the first two quarters, but we need to analyze and figure out what happened after halftime.”



23/12/2018 Astana-Avtodor 100:83