UNICS Loses To PARMA, Loses Regular-Season Title

UNICS Loses To PARMA, Loses Regular-Season Title

PARMA Perm defeated UNICS Kazan on the road, 82-76 (15-18, 18-15, 32-17, 17-26).

Top scorers
UNICS: Raymar Morgan (27 + 7 reb), Konstantinos Kaimakoglou (11), Jamar Smith (11 + 5 ast), Anton Ponkrashov (10)

PARMA: Tre’ McLean (22 + 5 reb), Ken Brown (19 + 9 ast), Ivan Lazarev (10 + 5 reb), Rashard Kelly (10 + 6 reb), Nikolai Zhmako (10)

UNICS had to beat a seemingly unmotivated PARMA at any cost to keep its 1st-place hopes alive. But the early going showed that the visitors had plenty of fight left in them. Perm responded to an 8-2 run from UNICS to start the game with one of its one and only trailed by three at the end of the 1st quarter, 18-15. Janis Blums and Nikolai Zhmako kept knocking down 3-pointers to keep PARMA close and, ultimately, knot the score at 33-33 at halftime. 

The game stayed close for the first half of the 3rd quarter, before PARMA erupted with seven points from Tre’ McLean, a Ken Brown 3-pointer and resulting 12-0 run. Kazan tried to come back, but McLean and Brown could not be stopped. The American duo combined for 22 points in the period, giving the visitors a shocking 65-50 advantage. 

Turning point
The 4th quarter started with fireworks from Raymar Morgan, who scored 10 of UNICS’s first 12 points. But PARMA continued to maintain an 8-10 point advantage, determined to finish the upset. With three minutes left, Jamar Smith cut the deficit to five, but McLean answered at the other end with another triple. Amazingly, Kazan was never able to get closer, suffering a disappointing setback and losing its hopes of a regular-season championship. This was Kazan’s second loss of the season to PARMA. 

Tre’ McLean. He helped PARMA pull away, scored a team-high 22 and contributed three steals and one block on defense.

3-24 – Kazan never found its rhythm from beyond the arc, which proved a major factor in the defeat. 

PARMA head coach Viacheslav Shushakov: “We played loose today. We chose the right strategy on offense, finally added ball movement and hit open shots at a high percentage. The 3rd quarter made the difference for us. Our goal was to disrupt UNICS’s rhythm and we were able to do it. We took the court after halftime with the right attitude.” 

UNICS head coach Dimitris Priftis: “This was a bad day for us. We didn’t play at the right level or with enough energy. We’ll move on. We have a road game in three days. We need to refocus and prepare for the next game.”


18/04/2019 UNICS-PARMA 76:82