Astapkovich and Nizhny are still on fire

Astapkovich and Nizhny are still on fire

Nizhny Novgorod beat Zielona Gora at home – 100:93 (24:31, 25:18, 27:23, 24:21).

Top scorers
Nizhny Novgorod: Anton Astapkovich (25), Kasey Shepherd (19+5 rebounds), Artem Komolov (18), Ivan Strebkov (14), Evgeny Baburin (13+5 rebounds+8 assists)
Zielona Gora: Iffe Lundberg (24+6 assists), Geoffrey Grosselle (22), Marcel Ponitka (19), Rolands Freimanis (12), Cecil Williams (12)

The Polish squad suffered 2 losses on the season start and in case of another defeat they could settle on the bottom of standings. Thus, they started aggressively in offense although they played on the road. It seemed like Geoffrey Grosselle wanted to beat Kasey Shepherd record and hit almost all of his shots. 15 points in a quarter and a double-digit lead of the guests made Nizhny do their best to make -7 out of -13 by the end of the quarter – 24:31.

The second quarter the hosts started much more aggressive and at some point via Evgeny Baburin’s bomb tied the game – 31:31. Trying to take control over the game Nizhny Novgorod started shootout against the opponents and took the lead for a while, but Grosselle and Marcel Ponitka successful actions didn’t let Nizhny run away. By the half break the score was 49:49.

Key moment
The third quarter had lots of lead changes as well, the opponents were exchanging three-pointers and by the end of the quarter Nizhny led – 76:72. At the first minutes of the final quarter the situation remained the same but at some point Nizhny managed to make 9:3 run, that made the guests struggle. However, Zan Tabak team didn’t give up and answered with Ponitka and Lundberg makes. Just like in game against Khimki Anton Astapkovich took over the game. His 5 clutch points supported by successful drive by Ivan Strebkov brought Nizhny the second victory in the season.

Anton Astapkovich. One of Nizhny leader was on fire again, he became the best scorer of the game, played in clutch with no mistakes and it was his possession that decided the faith of the game and brought Nizhny first 100 of the season.

6 – the number of threes by NN guard Artem Komolov. This is his personal record repeat and second best franchise result.

Nizhny Novgorod head coach Zoran Lukic:
– We had more than 2 weeks to explain the players what we want to see this game. We succeeded, I guess. At times we played reckless. At the beginning we weren’t active, lacked energy, dedication, thus we let our opponents gain 13-point lead in the first quarter. Yes, we won, but the quality of our game is questionable as 93 points at home game are allowed. We’ll se how we’ll look in the game against Lokomotiv on the road.
I want to note Zielona Gora and Zan Tabak, I really like the way this team is built.

Zielona Gora head coach Zan Tabak:
– It’s impossible to hope for an away victory when you allow 100 points. We didn’t stick to the game plan, made lots of mistakes in defense and I can’t call our game in the first quarter confident as we allowed 24 points. We should remember who we are. We aren’t the VTB United League top-team, so we can’t afford playing like this and allow 100 points. It’s not what we are practicing and playing for.

Nizhny Novgorod: October 18 vs Lokomotiv-Kuban
Zielona Gora: October 13 vs PARMA