Levski was one shot away of winning the Cup of Bulgaria in Samokov for the season 2011/12. In an extraordinary match, 'Blues' had a several chances to get a win against a big rival Lukoil Academic, but at the end lost by two points difference 81-83. Same as the game in in 2011 the two teams have made a unique finish, and finally with a great deal of happiness and the obvious referee support in the second half Lukoil Academic once again is the winner of the Cup.
Already in the first minutes of the meeting the two teams played a very high level, exchanging the lead few times and tie the score in the final minute of the first ten, 19-19. However both Lukoil and Levski missed few good chances before two free throws by Damjan Stojanovski gave advance of 21-19 for Lukoil, while Jarrett Howell has failed to do the best in the final shot in favor of 'blues' .
Levski made a series of 9-0 in the middle of the second quarter and led by 38-30. By the end of first half, however with few three point shots of Bruno Sundov Lukoil Academic brought the score down to 1 point. Basket at the end of second quarter by Aaron Harper showed 42-39 for Levski at the break.
Brandon Heath (193-G-84, college: San Diego St.) and Lamont Mack had 10 apiece in the first half, while Harper was the best scorer for Levski with 11 points.
Thanks to the big fighter Vasil Evtimov Levski managed to keep ahead in the early stages of second half, but once again two shots each behind the line by Mack and Sundov got them back in the game. Eventually Lukoil Academic put more points in the board of that third quarter but that was not only thanks to their players but by the officials in the game Lukoil Academic amazingly didnt get any fouls by the referees in the third quarter despite playing very tough defense as usual. That is how at the end of third quarter the result of 61-57 was already in favor of Lukoil Academic.
Lukoil led up to the middle of last quarter, but Levski players showed character and leveled to 68-68 with just 5.13 minutes before the end of game. Just a minute before the end of Heath scored 80-76, and then Aaron Harper was fouled, but managed to score only one free throw. In the counter-attack Lamont Mack made a turnover, Marcus Hall stole and finished to get his team back to only a point of difference in favor of Lukoil, 32.8 seconds remaining. The ball was for Lukoil, but Andre Owens throwed the ball away and Levski had their opportunity. In the first attack for Levski, Hrisimir Dimitrov failed to score as was fouled by Sundov and Levski didnt get the call, then Jarrett Howell missed his chance to be a hero with wide open shot behind the 3 point line. Bojidar Avramov took the rebound and was fouled, and succeeded in his second attempt from the line - 81-79 for Lukoil with 10.8 seconds remaining. In the last attack for Levski Harper was fouled, but he missed both free throws. Brandon Heath was succesfull from the charity stripe before Pavel Ivanov fix the final score - 83-81.
Aaron Harper scored 16 for Levski, Vasco Evtimov finished with a fantastic 14 points and 17 rebounds, but that didnt help the team to get the Cup.
Brandon Heath scored 31 points and handled six assists, Mack added 18 and Sundov finished with 14.
Defending champion Lukoil Academic Sofia (NBL) tabbed 24-year old American center Steve Zack (211-111kg-92, college: La Salle). He played most recently at Liepaja/Triobet in the Latvian LBL league. In 21 games there he averaged 14.0ppg, 11.9rpg, 1.3apg and 1.2bpg last season. He can count that year as a very successful one as he was selected to the Latvian League All-Star Game. Zack also played 12 games in the Baltic League, where he had 12.3ppg and 11.0rpg (leader). He helped them make i... [read more]
Defending champion Lukoil Academic Sofia (NBL) tabbed 24-year old American center Steve Zack (211-111kg-92, college: La Salle). He played most recently at Liepaja/Triobet in the Latvian LBL league. In 21 games there he averaged 14.0ppg, 11.9rpg, 1.3apg and 1.2bpg last season. He can count that year as a very successful one as he was selected to the Latvian League All-Star Game. Zack also played 12 games in the Baltic League, where he had 12.3ppg and 11.0rpg (leader). He helped them make it to the quarterfinals. A very impressive season for him, as he was awarded Eurobasket.com All Baltic League Center of the Year, selected to the 1st Team, and selected to the All-Imports Team. Zack has tried to make it to the NBA and played in the NBA Pro Summer League in 2015. He graduated from La Salle University in 2015 and it is his second season in pro basketball.
Xinjiang Flying Tige adds Adams to their roster - 2 days ago
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Xinjiang Flying Tigers (CBA) added to their roster 27-year old Bulgarian international point guard Darius Adams (188-84kg-89, college: Indianapolis, agency: Stealth Sport). He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. Adams has played for the last two seasons at Laboral Kutxa in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 41 games he recorded very impressive stats: 16.4ppg, 2 [read more]
Xinjiang Flying Tigers (CBA) added to their roster 27-year old Bulgarian international point guard Darius Adams (188-84kg-89, college: Indianapolis, agency: Stealth Sport). He is a dual citizen owning also American passport. Adams has played for the last two seasons at Laboral Kutxa in Spanish Liga Endesa. In 41 games he recorded very impressive stats: 16.4ppg, 2.8rpg, 2.9apg and 1.3spg last season. Adams helped them to make it to the semifinals. A very spectacular season in his career as he was selected Eurobasket.com All-Spanish Liga Endesa Import Player of the Year, Guard of the Year and voted to 1st Team. Adams also played 29 games in Euroleague where he averaged 13.2ppg, 2.2rpg, 4.0apg and 1.3spg. He contributed to his team making it to the Euroleague Final Four. The previous (14-15) season Adams played at Sluc Nancy in ProA in. In 14 games he averaged remarkable 18.3ppg, 3.6rpg, 3.7apg and 1.9spg. He also played 10 games in Eurocup where he averaged high stats: 17.2ppg, 4.1rpg, 5.6apg and 1.7spg. Adams has tried to make it to the NBA and played in the NBA Pro Summer League earlier this month. He was called to Bulgarian Senior National Team this year. Adams is quite experienced player. His career allowed him to visit three different continents, while he played in six different countries. Adams tasted the life as pro basketball player in Europe, Latin America and of course North America. He has played previously professionally in Dominican Rep., Germany (Eisbaeren Bremerhaven), Ukraine (SC Kryvbas), Venezuela (Guaiqueries), France (Entente Orleans 45) and Dominican Republic (Reales de La Vega). Adams attended University of Indianapolis until 2011 and it will be his sixth season as a professional player. On Adams:
One of the best players in Division II in his college career. Unlike most high-profile guys, Adams has been through the struggles. He went from being a bench player for the Generals to a two-year college before becoming the nation's seventh-best scorer in D II.
Adams said. "The main thing is proving yourself. I know if I just keep going hard and putting in the work, that's where I want to be.".
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