23january

Timma Leads Zenit Over Krasny Oktyabr

Zenit St. Petersburg defeated Krasny Oktyabr Volgograd on the road, 74-67. The Blue-White-Sky Blues led most of the contest, but needed several clutch baskets and timely steals to seal the deal in the final minutes. Zenit improves to 10-3, the 5th team in the league to reach 10 victories.

Intro
After losses to UNICS and Lokomotiv, Zenit picked up a pair of wins in the league and Eurocup. The club also added Kaspars Berzins, who made his debut on Saturday afternoon. Krasny Oktyabr had also won two straight entering the contest and trailed 8th-place Nizhny Novgorod by one game for the final playoff spot.

Early on, Jerry Jefferson and Ekene Ibekwe led the way for the home team. The two big men signed with Oktyabr in late December and have had a big impact, averaging nearly 30 points and 15 rebounds combined.

Zenit's Ryan Toolson and Pavel Antipov kept Zenit close, helping the visitors even the score at the end of the opening period.

The momentum shifted to St. Petersburg in the 2nd quarter. Eight different players scored for Zenit in the period and they led by as much as 7, before Oktyabr closed the first half on a 7-1 run to make it a one-point game, 35-34.

Zenit was a bit better in the 3rd quarter, taking a four-point advantage into the final period. Ibekwe kept Oktyabr close, scoring eight points in the quarter.

Turning Point
Volgograd trailed by two points with under three minutes to play, but Andrey Koscheev and Janis Timma hit back-to-back field goals to stretch the Zenit lead to seven. Oktyabr had several more chances to make it close, but two costly turnovers in the final minute doomed the home team to defeat.

Star Player
Janis Timma. The Latvian forward stuffed the stat sheet on Saturday, recording 15 points, 13 rebounds, three assists and three steals.

Stat of the Game
24 - number of points scored by Krasny Oktyabr's starting lineup. Ibekwe scored 26 off the bench, but Volgograd needed more production from its main rotation. 

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