He made it to the final of the “Pavlos Giannakopoulos” tournament Armani Milano, which beat Maccabi Tel Aviv 80-71 with a very good performance after the first quarter.
Top for Italians Thomas (15 points), Mitrou-Long (19 points) and Ritchie (13 points), while Pangos, Shields, Datome and Voigtman did not compete.
On the other, for “the people’s team” Hilliard (18 points), Boldwin (11 points) and Poythres (12 points) stood out, while Lorenzo Brown, Rowland and Pnini did not play.
Maccabi she started the game better and with her tall ones performing, she got a 7-point “air” (9-2 in 4′). Messina tried to change the tempo of the game with successive moves from the bench, but Armani Milano could get no closer. The difference jumped to +12 (24-12 at 8′), while the first quarter ended with the score at 24-15.
At the start of the second period, the Italians “tightened” defensively and with individual scores of 16-2 they went ahead (26-31 at 16′). With Mitrou-Long executing from everywhere, the “reds” got even further away (28-34 at 17′). From there on, the two teams got stuck offensively, with Milan ending the half at +5 (32-37).
With Thomas entering the equation and defeating the opposing defense, Messina’s team escaped with +10 (34-44) at the start of the third period (23′). Armani had found a rhythm and scores from the perimeter, consequently closing the quarter with a 14-point “air” (42-56), while Maccabi looked short-circuited offensively.
Hilliard caught fire early in the fourth quarter and gnawed away at the lead for the “people’s team” (48-58 at 32′). However, there was no way for the Katas players to get any closer as they lost concentration. With… four points by Baron, the Italians went away with +17 (54-71 at 36′) and virtually sealed the victory.
The last few minutes were procedural, with Armani Milano reaching the pink scorecard (71-80) and to qualify for the final of the “Pavlos Giannakopoulos” tournament.
The quarters: 24-15, 32-37, 42-56, 71-80.
Maccabi Tel Aviv (Katas): Baldwin 11 (5 assists), Martin 2, Menko 5, Sorkin, Di Bartolomeo 7, Hilliard 18, Cohen 3, Hollins 11, Poythres 12 (6 rebounds), Niebo 1, Zive, Colson 1
Armani Milano (Messina): Davis 8, Thomas 15, Mitrou-Long 19, Tonut 2, Meli 2 (12 rebounds), Baron 7, Ritchie 13, Billiga 2, Hall 7, Baldasso, Alviti 2, Hines 3