EUROBASKET NEWS REPORT - 5/24/2008

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Men News

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ABA

Proliga Finals Highlighted by New York Natives -by Surujh Roopnarine
Vitoria won its decisive fifth game against Academica in the Proliga semifinals and will now face off against Fiscia who finished fifth during the regular season. The match up will also be between two of the best imports in all of Portugal in Tommie Eddie (6'7''-F/C-82, college: Mississippi) and Marcel Momplaisir (6'9''-C-81, college: Rhode Island). Eddie, a former member of the Brooklyn Kings (USBL) and Strong Island Sound (ABA) and a native of Brooklyn, was named MVP of the Proliga after amassing an MVP index of 828 while leading the league in scoring (23.1ppg) and finishing second in rebounds (11.4rpg). The physically imposing forward had his multitude of talents on full display this season, scoring from inside while also connecting on 34% of his attempts from behind the arc. In his third full year out of Mississippi (NCAA) Gunzz as he is affectionately referred to has emerged as a force in the international basketball scene and an impressive showing in the finals will further lead to his ascension up the basketball ranks.
Momplaisir, a Queens, NY native out of Rhode Island manned the interior for Fiscia with impressive results. Finishing third in the MVP race with a 607 rating, the 69 big man averaged 15.3 points and 9.1 rebounds while posting a league-leading 1.6 blocks per game. Still relatively young at 26, Momplaisir is in his second season in the Proliga after having spent half of the 2006-07 season with Angra / Susiarte / Samsung. This is Marcels most action in a season (26 games) since leaving Rhode Island in 2005.
While the big men will be key focal points in the Championship series, let us not forget about two NY bred point guards who will be dictating the pace of the finals, in Vitorias John Winchester (6'4''-G-83, college: Robert Morris) and Fiscias Kendell Craig (6'2''-G-80, college: Adelphi). Winchester, who was born in Connecticut, cut his teeth on the playgrounds of New York and New Jersey while splitting his time collegiately between Tennessee and Quinnipiac, finally finishing up at Robert Morris (NAIA). Winchester has excellent size for a point guard, measuring in at 64 and has all the poise of a veteran guard 10 years his elder. Winchester averaged 18 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.8 assists while shooting 53% on two-point field goals and 37% from three.
Kendell Craig the veteran of the group, turning 28 in a week, also has the least heralded background, coming from DII Adelphi in New York. The Queens native had an impressive run in college, averaging over 16 points and five rebounds a game over four years. He also played briefly for the now defunct Westchester Wildfire of the USBL. This season for Fiscia, Craig averaged 18.8 points, 6.5 rebounds while shooting 52% on two-point field goals. In two head to head meetings with Vitoria, Craig scored 16 and 17 points respectively.
It will be interesting to see how these heavily relied upon imports meet the challenge and pressure of Championship basketball in Portugal.


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ADRIATIC LEAGUE

Igor Milosevic remains at Crvena Zvezda -by Dragan Jankovski

Point guard Igor Milosevic (193-G-86) and management of BC Crvena Zvezda from Belgrade extended contract for one more season. After serious injury and almost 9 months of recovering period, Milosevic played 17 minutes against Borac Cacak at the previous round of Serbian Superlegaue.

At the interview for the Serbian newspapers 'Sportski Zurnal' Milosevic said: 'I am not in a good shape as I get tired very quick. It is the biggest problem for me at the moment. But what is the most important I am mentally very strong and I know that my time is coming. This summer will be crucial period for me to work hard and continue where serious injury stopped me.'


On the question about his ambitions for the next season Milosevic said: 'The team expects from me to be the starting point guard and it is the main reason why I have extended my contract for one more year. I will repeat once again that I have to work very hard this summer in order to be capable to take this position next season. However it doesnt mean that I am not able to help my teammates now. I feel better and better every day.'

Milosevic later continued: 'Work with Omar Cook extremely helped me. In the past I also had a chance to work with some top European players, as Dimitris Diamantidis. I spent 3 years with him and I learned a lot.'

About Zvezda's willingness to fight for the title this season Milosevic thoughts are: 'We are not favorites but title is our main target always. Play-off is not like regular season and one game can change a lot of things. I am sure we are capable to beat any rival in Serbia.'



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ALGERIA

USMMH snatches the ticket to the play-offs -by Kristian Santiago
USMM Hadjout qualified as the eighth team for the play-offs on the final day of the regular season in Algeria by beating WA Boufarik 81-74.
Hadjout edged out JSB Msila (who routed NAHD 69-52) and WB Ayn Benian (81-78 over ASPTT) for the last available spot on the quarter-finals.

CRB Dar El-Beida closed the regular season by securing the second place with a 86-72 win over Staoueli while MC Alger is still unbeatable (25th consecutive victory) and destroyed O Batna 93-43 to stay on top. The re-scheduled game between MC Alger and financially-riddled AU Annaba will be played today in Alger instead of in Annaba, one day after Annaba faced Temouchent for another re-scheduled game.

The results of the 26th round:
NA Rouiba - CRM Birkhadem 82-77
JSB Msila - NA Hussein-Dey 69-52
WA Boufarik - USMM Hadjout 74-81
ASPTT Alger - WB Ain-Benian 78-81
MC Alger - O Batna 93-43
NB Staoeuli - CRB Dar-El- Beda 72-86
CRB Temouchent - AU Annaba (May,22nd)


Algerian Cup: The Quarterfinal pairings -by Kristian Santiago
CRB Dar El-Beida are facing seven-time cup champions Widad Boufarik , who are in the middle of a restructuring process due financial woes that have appeared during this season, so it should be an easy task for CRB Dar El-Beida.

N.B. Staoueli takes on ASPTT Alger while favorites Mouloudia Club Alger (Nine-time cup champions and therefore record-holders) should have no problems by advancing over USMM Hadjout.

The last match-up will be between WB Ain-Benian and second division-side ASPTT Oran , and WBAB who is still disappointed of not reaching the league play-offs, should have no trouble to beat Oran, who once even won the cup back in 1971.


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ASIAN CLUB CHAMPIONSHIPS

Asia-Basket.com All-Asian Club Championships Awards 2008 -by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Muoneke


Tate


Chatfield


El Khatib


Lamizana
MVP: Gabe Muoneke (200-F-78) of Saba
Best Guard: Eric Chatfield (191-G-79) of Rayyan
Best Forward: Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Best Center: Herve Lamizana (208-F/C-81) of Wasl
Best Import Player: Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Best Domestic Player: Fadi El Khatib (197-F-79) of Riyadi
Best Coach: Mehran Tab Shain of Saba

1st Team
DaJuan Tate (196-G/F-81) of Saba
Eric Chatfield of Rayyan
Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Fadi El Khatib of Riyadi
Herve Lamizana of Wasl

2nd Team
Eric Chatfield of Wasl
Samad Nikkhah (200-F/G-83) of Saba
Rah-Shun Roberts (202-F-75) of Muharraq
Alpha Bangura (197-F/G-80) of Qadsia
Ahmad Ismail (201-F-76) of Riyadi

Honorable Mention
Daoud Musa (193-G-82) of Rayyan
Yaseen Ismail (204-F-80) of Rayyan
Donald Little (211-C-78) of Muharraq
Anton Kataev (201-F-84) of Almaty
Boney Watson (183-G) of Zain
Hamed Hadadi (218-C-85) of Saba

All-Imports Team
Gabe Muoneke of Saba
DaJuan Tate of Saba
Eric Chatfield of Rayyan
Herve Lamizana of Wasl
Rah-Shun Roberts of Muharraq

All-Asian Players Team
Fadi El Khatib of Riyadi
Samad Nikkhah of Saba
Daoud Musa of Rayyan
Yaseen Ismail of Rayyan
Hamed Hadadi of Saba


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BELGIUM

Spirou Basket Charleroi and Basket Bree advance to the Finals -by Eurobasket News
Spirou Basket Charleroi and Basket Bree advance to the Finals after sweeping the semifinal series against the opponents.
Spirou overcame Dexia Mons-Hainaut 73:54 away from home to get the ticket to the Final. The latter struggled a lot and being the home team opened the game with 21:17. They still led the game for good with 36:34 when the teams left the court for the break. Spirou Basket Charleroi became another team in the second half and dominated the court. A 5:14 in the last quarter was fatal for the hosts that had to admit the loss. Jonathan Tabu (190-G-85) top-scored for Charleroi with 14 points. Tremmell Darden added 12 and Andre Riddick (208-C-73, college: Kentucky) and Jerry Johnson (183-G-82, agency: Hart Sports Mngm, college: Rider) had 10 each for the winners. Ben Ebong (202-F/C-76, college: Davidson) led Mons with 13 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals.
Basket Bree edged Generali Okapi Aalstar also way from home 85:79. The latter produced 14-0 run in the second period to stay in the game and took control of it. Aalstar's lead was up to 8 before settling at 42:37 at halftime. Damian Cantrell triple gave Aalstar its last lead at 75:73. Basket Bree used a 8-0 run in the end of the game to seal the victory. Doron Perkins (188-G-83, college: Santa Clara) led the way for Bree with 23 points and 7 assists. Ronnie McCollum (192-G-78, college: Centenary) added 17 points and Jacobson 16. Trevor Huffman (187-G-79, agency: Duran International, college: Kent St.) chipped in 19 points and 7 assists in the losing side.
The finals will begin with Charleroi hosting Game 1 on Tuesday.


Optima Gent signs two young Belgian players -by Steven Van puyvelde
After the announcement Optima Gent signed new point guard Jesse Kimbrough (183-G-82, college: Jacksonville), they reached an agreement with two young Belgian players. First one in row is Domien Loubry (186-G-85) (186-G-85), who leaves the West-Brabant Giants (NED-Eredivisie) after two seasons. This year Loubry was second guard behind Patrick Pope(183-G-81), but he was a solid stand-in for the American guard. Loubry averaged this season 6.8 ppg and 3.5 apg, but hopes to get more minutes and buckets in Belgian league.

Second player who signed for Optima Gent is Senne Geukens (190-G-83) (190-G-83) after playin this season for top team Telindus Oostende, being active on both ends: Belgian competition and Uleb Cup. Also Geukens hopes to receive more minutes then last year, where he had to deal with lot of concurrention. Geukens averaged in 24 games 0.9 ppg and 0.5 apg in the Belgian league, while playing 6 games in the Uleb-cup and having 0.6ppg.

Hans van Langenhove and Michael Krikemans will also be on the Gent roster for next season.Negotiations with Ike Ofoegbu, Brandon Freeman and captain Tibo T'Joncke are still ongoing. John Turek seems to have already received offers from other teams and Gent think it will be close to impossible to keep him.


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BOSNIA

Igokea Partizan hires coach Drago Karalic -by Eurobasket News
As Eurobasket wrote yesterday that Drago Karalic is very close to become a head coach of Igokea Partizan, it come true just 24 hours ago.

Karalic started this season on the bench of Borac Nekar, the team who was deadly for Igokea previous week-end. After he parted ways with Borac, Karalic immediately took over Hercegovac from Bileca which he saved from relegation.

New Igokea's head coach will have a difficult task to motivate the team after two inconvenient defeats. Igokea was on top of Bosnian league 8 two rounds before but situation has changed. The team lost against Sloboda Dita and Borac thus they will struggle to finish League 8 on second position. Igokea currently has score 8-4.


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BULGARIA

Eurobasket.com All-Bulgarian League Awards 2007-08 -by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Deane III


Antic


Lilov


Dimitrov


Morton
Player of the Year - Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Guard of the Year - Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Forward of the Year - Pero Antic (210-F-82) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Center of the Year - Stefan Georgiev (206-C/F-78) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia
Newcomer of the Year - Hristo Zahariev (197-G-90) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia
Most Improved Player of the Year - Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Bosman Player of the Year - Pero Antic (210-F-82) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Import Player of the Year - Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Domestic Player of the Year - Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Defensive Player of the Year - Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Coach of the Year - Georgi Mladenov (Balkan)

1st Team
Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Hrisimir Dimitrov (197-G/F-74) of BC Spartak Pleven
Dwayne Morton (200-F-71) of Balkan Botevgrad
Pero Antic (210-F-82) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia

2nd Team
Pavle Boljkovac (190-G-85) of Balkan Botevgrad
Stanislav Govedarov (185-G-80) of Tundja Yambol
Hristo Nikolov (200-F-85) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Lavell Payne (203-F-85) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Stefan Georgiev (206-C/F-78) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia

Honorable Mention
Yulian Radionov (188-G-79) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia
Asen Velikov (188-G-86) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia
Ludmil Hadjisotirov (189-G-80) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Georgi Davidov (204-C-76) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Mike Henderson (188-G-84) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Atanas Radev (200-F-81) of Balkan Botevgrad
Aleksandar Yanev (198-F-90) of Cherno More
Leven Belberov (199-F-74) of Cherno More Eurohold Varna

All-Domestic Players Team
Stanislav Govedarov (185-G-80) of Tundja Yambol
Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Hristo Nikolov (200-F-85) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Hrisimir Dimitrov (197-G/F-74) of BC Spartak Pleven
Stefan Georgiev (206-C/F-78) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia

All-Imports Team
Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Mike Henderson (188-G-84) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Larry O'Bannon (191-F-83) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Dwayne Morton (200-F-71) of Balkan Botevgrad
Lavell Payne (203-F-85) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia

All-Bosmans Team
Branko Mirkovic (185-G-82) of Rilski Sportist Samokov
Pavle Boljkovac (190-G-85) of Balkan Botevgrad
Riste Stefanov (198-G-83) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Pero Antic (210-F-82) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Nenad Canak (204-F-76) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia

All-Defensive Team
Willie Deane III (186-G-80) of PBC Lukoil Akademik Sophia
Ludmil Hadjisotirov (189-G-80) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Ivan Lilov (196-F-88) of Balkan Botevgrad
Lavell Payne (203-F-85) of BC CSKA Interlogic Sophia
Dwayne Morton (200-F-71) of Balkan Botevgrad

All-Newcomers Team
Pavle Boljkovac (190-G-85) of Balkan Botevgrad
Hristo Zahariev (197-G-90) of BC Levski Ekopetroulium Sophia
Martin Durchev (200-G-87) of Tundja Yambol
Aleksandar Yanev (198-F-90) of Cherno More
Nikolay Kolev (200-F-88) of Cherno More Eurohold Varna


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CROATIA

Awards for Damir Markota and Marko Popovic in Lithuania -by Eurobasket News
Members of Croatian National Team and teammates from Zalgiris Kaunas, Marko Popovic (185-G-82, college: S.Idaho JC) and Damir Markota (209-C/F-85), got prestigious awards in Lithuanian top division LKL.

Both players are named to be in All-Bosmans team of LKL for season 07/08. Their Zalgiris Kaunas won Baltic league this season and well as LKL. But it is not everything which Zalgiris done this season. The team from Kaunas also was a National Cup winner.

Popovic played 23 games in Lithuanian league averaging 12.3 ppg and 2.7 apg. Markota had 14 appearances adding 12.6 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 1.9 apg.


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DENMARK

MVP-award in the mens U/18 goes to Darko Jukic of Falcon -by Michael Ronne


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ESTONIA

Stats Leaders
EMKL Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 Vares, Valga 19.7
2 Parve, Parnu 19.6
3 Cusworth, Rock 19.5
4 Armpalu, Fausto 19.2
5 Niidas, Kraft 16.7
Rebounds Per Game
1 McQuay, Kraft 11.5
2 Sharp, Pirita 10.3
3 Atuashvili, TTU KK 9.3
4 Tagamets,Fausto 8.3
5 Niidas, Kraft 7.7
Assists Per Game
1 Tsintsadze, Rock 4.2
2 Rannula, Valga 3.9
3 Kaljula, Fausto 3.8
4 Sokk, Dalkia 3.6
5 Reinbok, Pirita 3.2
Steals Per Game
1 Sharp, Pirita 2.6
2 Pugonen, Fausto 2.1
3 Tamm, Kraft 2.0
Blocks Per Game
1 Sharp, Pirita 1.7
2 Niidas, Kraft 1.4
3 Skadas, Valga 1.4
2FGP
1 Talts, Rock 78
2 Sestokas, Rock 71
3 Kriisa, Kalev 70
3FGP
1 Kriisa, Kalev 47.6
2 Tsintsadze, Rock 46.9
3 Oja, Valga 45.2
Free Throws
1 Hallik, Valga 87
2 Gray, Pirita 87
3 Kaljula, Fausto 85


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FYR MACEDONIA

Stats Leaders - Superleague
First Macedonian League Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1. Jarrid Frye (Amak SP) 19.77
2. Dime Tasovski (Strumica 2005) 19.30
3. Muhamed Thaci (MZT FON Univerzitet Skopje)18.60
Rebounds Per Game
1. Damir Latovic (Strumica 2005) 8.86
2. Muhamed Thaci (MZT FON Univerzitet Skopje) 6.90
3. Sasko Vasilev (Karpos Sokoli 2000) 6.53
Assists Per Game
1. Dimitar Mirakovski (Fersped Rabotnicki) 5.83
2. Jane Petrovski (MZT Skopje) 5.14
3. Milan Miljkovic (Swisslion Pelister) 4.93
Steals Per Game
1. Jarrid Frye (Amak SP) 2.27,
2. Milan Miljkovic (Swisslion Pelister) 2.00,
3. Muhamed Thaci (MZT FON Univerzitet Skopje) 1.80.
Blocks Per Game
1. Toni Simic (Fersped Rabotnicki) 1.30,
2. Srdjan Stankovic (Swisslion Pelister) 1.04,
3. Filip Kralevski (Vardar Osiguruvanje) 0.93.
2FGP
1. Gjorgji Talevski (Swisslion Pelister) 69.67,
2. Dime Tasovski (Strumica 2005) 67.57,
3. Pero Blazevski (Vardar Osiguruvanje) 65.81.
3FGP
1. Goran Veselinovski (Fersped Rabotnicki) 45.29 %
2. Pero Blazevski (Vardar Osiguruvanje) 45.07 %
3. Ognen Stojanovski (Fersped Rabotnicki) 43.17%
Free Throws
1. Pero Blazevski (Vardar Osiguruvanje) 78.96,
2. Muhamed Thaci (MZT FON Univerzitet Skopje) 72.40,
3. Dimitar Mirakovski (Fersped Rabotnicki) 70.48.


Spectacular opening of the new sports hall "Boris Trajkovski" -by Eurobasket News
Legendary basketball team Harlem Globetrotters had 2 hours performance at the opening of the new sports hall in Macedonia. New gym got the name of ex Macedonian president Boris Trajkovski, who passed away in airplane crush.

Macedonia officially got ultra modern sports complex. Almost 6.000 spectators enjoyed very popular Globetrotters performance. The team with 27 participants created fantastic show which lasted more than two hours. Macedonian basketball public showed big interest for the event as tickets were already sold out a day before.

Macedonian prime minister, Nikola Gruevski, officially opened new hall 'Boris Trajkovski', which costs around 20 million euros. The best sports hall in Macedonia is multifunctional center which can be used for many sports activities. It has a press center with 56 spots for the media. Hall is perfect for concerts as it capacity can reach 10.000 people. There is also four restaurants and sports bar, which can be used for any other purpose.

Gym posses separated VIP entrance, VIP bar and VIP part near the court. It is equipped with modern video control for monitoring of the entire space. It is one of the most important things regarding safety inside the gym.

Outside the gym is free parking which capacity is 800 cars and 32 busses.


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GEORGIA

Energy improves to 2-1 in the Finals, while TSU takes Bronze -by Eurobasket News
Energy Invest survived a first battle away from home towards the Final lead over Tbilaviamsheni. The latter enjoyed 11 points at the half but could no stay on race with the winner of the regular season. A great 30:19 at the half kept the hosts up to 46:35. Energy Invest came back into the game due to 24:14 in the third quarter and used a defensive outfit in the last. With 71:71 both squads left the court after 4 quarters and in overtime Energy Invest used a 12:6 to seal the victory. Jovan Stefanov (208-F-83, college: Ill.-Chicago) was named MVP of the game after tremendous 39 points and 14 rebounds. Ledjava scored 13 and Babiashvili collected 8 points and 9 rebounds. Konstantine Tugushi (193-G-84) top-scored with 22 points and 12 rebounds in defeat.

TSU meanwhile grabbed the bronze medals of the Georgian Play-offs. In the last game the team overcame VITA 86:85. TSU were awarded the bronze medals by a president of GBF Besik Liparteliani. Davit Berishvili (181-G-78) led the winners with 21 points and 4 assists. Barbaqadze nailed 20 and Kvelashvili had 12. Luka Nozadze (207-F-88) top-scored with 20 points and 8 rebounds in the losing effort.

Tbilaviamsheni-Energy Invest 77:83
Tbilaviamsheni: Konstantine Tugushi (22 pts. 12 rbs. 6 asts. 2 stls. 2 blcks), Giorgi Nikoladze (188-G-81) (19 pts. 4 rbs), Richard Matiashvili (210-C-89) (13 pts. 12 rbs. 2 stls).
Energy Invest: Jovan Stefanov (39 pts. 14 rbs. 4 stls. 2 asts), Ledjava (13 pts. 5 rbs), Babiashvili (8 pts. 9 rbs).

TSU -VITA 86:85
TSU: Davit Berishvili (21 pts. 4 asts), Barbaqadze (20 pts. 7 rbs), Kvelashvili (12 pts. 7 rbs), Khetsuriani (10 pts. 7 rbs. 3 asts), Tkeshelashvili (10 pts. 7 rbs).
Vita: Luka Nozadze (20 pts. 8 rbs. 5 blcks), Markhvashvili (16 pts. 7 asts. 4 rbs), Gvimradze (15 pts), Bedzanishvili (12 pts. 12 rbs. 4 asts).


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GERMANY

Jacob Ndi from Stahnsdorf to Cuxhaven -by Moritz Korff
After extending the contracts of Frederick Gary Kleemichen (209-F-86) and Andreas Hasenkamm (188-G-83), the club-officials of the Cuxhaven BasCats (2. Bundesliga Pro A) signed another German player for the 2008-2009 campaign. Jacob Ndi (185-G-82) will join the squad of Coach Vilmantas Matkevicius. The 26-year-old Point Guard had 21 appearances for RSV Eintracht Stahnsdorf in the ProB during this past season. He scored 8.1 points per game and dished out a team-high 4.7 assists per outing.

Osnabrueck adds young German Power Forward -by Moritz Korff
Another spot on the roster of the P4two Ballers Osnabrueck, newcomer to the 2. Bundesliga Pro B, has been filled. Bastian Wolff (204-F/C-87) is going to suit up for the Ballers in the 2008-2009 season. The 20-year-old Power Forward spent the past years in the USA and shot hoops for the Harlingen Marine Military in Texas. Before making the trip overseas Wolff played basketball for TSV Quakenbrueck. Meanwhile, Larry Morinia (180-G-80, agency: ProSportsCareers, college: Montana St.), Steffen Mueller (183-G-84), Kevin Schweiger (193-G/F-87) and Thomas Wodny (180-G-83), who all helped to win the RLN-championship in 2007-2008, received no offers to play for the Ballers in the Pro B.

Bundesliga Playoff results Friday May 23rd! -by Michael Taylor
Friday May 23rd
Ewe Baskets Oldenburg 83 brose Baskets Bamberg 70 (Oldenburg wins series 3-1)
Ewe Baskets Oldenburg knocked out defending Bundesliga champions brose Baskets Bamberg adding to the drama this exciting postseason. Friday nights 83-70 win in Game 4 at Ewe Arena in Oldenburg pushed Head Coach Predrag Krunic and his team through to the next round where they will meet ALBA Berlin in one Bundesliga semi-final matchup. Oldenburg started strong with a 23-17 1Q and built their lead to 32-19 before taking a 39-30 lead into half. Rickey Paulding was outstanding in the first half scoring 18pt before the break. Bamberg bounced back after halftime trimming the deficit to 54-51 heading into the 4th. Oldenburg ended the series with a strong 4th to earn the win. The Thunderbirds shot 51% from the floor making 10 of 23 threes (43%) and 19 of 35 FT (54%) while outrebounding Bamberg 39-20. Rickey Paulding paced Oldenburgs offense with 24pt 8reb 4-8 threes with help from Jason Gardner 22pt 5ast and Miladin Pekovic 12pt. Bamberg hit 41% from the floor, 7 of 23 (30%) threes and 17 of 27 FT (63%). Dwayne Mitchell led Bamberg with 18pt 6reb 5ast while Darren Fenn added 13pt in the loss. Along with Telekom Baskets Bonn upset series win over Artland Dragons, Ewe Baskets Oldenburg 3-1 series triumph over brose Baskets Bamberg is another example of the fantastic post season basketball this Bundesliga playoffs!


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GREECE

Transfer news and rumors -by Chris Mammides

A1
Jeremiah Massey (202-F-82, college: Kansas St.) agreed financial terms with Real Madrid and he will continue his career in the Spanish ACB league. The American power forward, one of the best players in the Greek league the last two years, had a contract with Aris for another seazon and will bring to his ex club, Aris around one million euros. At the same time the Thesaloniki team is very close to agreed financial terms with the American guard (with Bulgarian passport) Keydren Clark (173-G-84, college: St.Peter's). Furthermore, there are some behind the scene rumors that they are bringing in the Alexandreion Melathron, the veteran player Panagiotis Liadelis.

A2

Some rumors are bringing the talented center Savas Tzougarakis (207-C-86) to be in front of the gates of the new comer in the division, Near East.

B' Division

The third scorer of the third division this seazon, Kostas Sinnis (173-G-80) has agreed financial terms with the team of Christos Serelis's Lavrio.

OFI Irakleio, the newcomer in the second division team of OFI Irakleio agreed finanacial terms (not official announcements yet) with three players, these are: Kostas Tselios, Vangelis Vagenas and Giorgos Anagnostopoulos



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GUINEA

U-18 African Championships Qualifiers Zone 2 The Schedule -by Kristian Santiago

Here are the schedules for the zonal qualifying tournament in Guinea (Zone 2) for the U-18 African Championships for men and women.

Of the five men's teams expected, four have made the trip, while Guinea Bissau pulled out. At the end of these playoffs, the first of each category will be qualified for the final stages to take place from 2nd until the 10th of October in Tunisia for women and from 16th until 26th of October 2008 in Cairo, Egypt for men.

The Schedule

22 Mai 2008

15H00 F GUINEA - MALI
17H00 M GUINEA - MALI
23 Mai 2008

09H00 M MAURITANIA - SENEGAL
24 Mai 2008

09H00 F MALI - GUINEA
11H00 M GUINEA - MAURITANIA
25 Mai 2008

09H00 M SENEGAL- MALI
26 Mai 2008

15H00 M MAURITANIA - MALI
17H00 M SENEGAL - GUINEA



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HOLLAND

FEB Finals: MyGuide Amsterdam Wins Game #3 Convincingly -by Sanders Jackson

Thursday night in Game #3 of the FEB finals, MyGuide Amsterdam kept the home cooking warm, doubling up the score on Eiffel Towers two minutes into the final quarter, before eventually cruising to a 74-58 win to take a 2-1 lead in the series. MyGuide led at one point 68-34 in the 4th, with Eiffel pulling it closer when the pressure was off. MyGuide shot only 40.5% FG, but made 10 three-pointers, a sharp contrast to Game #2 when they made only 1 of 15 total. In which is usually Eiffel's game, the defending Dutch champions shot blanks from the three-point line, making only 6 of 22 total.
Sergerio Gipson (193-G/F-80, agency: 540 Sports, college: Arkansas) led MyGuide with 17 pts., Tamien Trent (183-G-82, agency: Strategic Sports, college: Fairleigh Dickinson) added 16 and Avis Wyatt (211-F/C-84, agency: Elfus-Siegel Management (ESM), college: Virginia St.) added a double-double of 11 pts. and 14 rebounds. Darrell Tucker (206-F-80, agency: Hart Sports Mngm, college: USF) was the only Eiffel player in double figures, with a game-high 21 pts. and 10 rebounds. MyGuide dominated the glass at a 51-33 clip. Game #4 will be played Saturday afternoon in Den Bosch.


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IRAN

Asia-Basket.com All-Asian Club Championships Awards 2008 -by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Muoneke


Tate


Chatfield


El Khatib


Lamizana
MVP: Gabe Muoneke (200-F-78) of Saba
Best Guard: Eric Chatfield (191-G-79) of Rayyan
Best Forward: Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Best Center: Herve Lamizana (208-F/C-81) of Wasl
Best Import Player: Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Best Domestic Player: Fadi El Khatib (197-F-79) of Riyadi
Best Coach: Mehran Tab Shain of Saba

1st Team
DaJuan Tate (196-G/F-81) of Saba
Eric Chatfield of Rayyan
Gabe Muoneke of Saba
Fadi El Khatib of Riyadi
Herve Lamizana of Wasl

2nd Team
Eric Chatfield of Wasl
Samad Nikkhah (200-F/G-83) of Saba
Rah-Shun Roberts (202-F-75) of Muharraq
Alpha Bangura (197-F/G-80) of Qadsia
Ahmad Ismail (201-F-76) of Riyadi

Honorable Mention
Daoud Musa (193-G-82) of Rayyan
Yaseen Ismail (204-F-80) of Rayyan
Donald Little (211-C-78) of Muharraq
Anton Kataev (201-F-84) of Almaty
Boney Watson (183-G) of Zain
Hamed Hadadi (218-C-85) of Saba

All-Imports Team
Gabe Muoneke of Saba
DaJuan Tate of Saba
Eric Chatfield of Rayyan
Herve Lamizana of Wasl
Rah-Shun Roberts of Muharraq

All-Asian Players Team
Fadi El Khatib of Riyadi
Samad Nikkhah of Saba
Daoud Musa of Rayyan
Yaseen Ismail of Rayyan
Hamed Hadadi of Saba


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ITALY

Serie A Semifinals Game 1 Thursday Game -by Stefano Pini
Montepaschi-Armani 75-71 (aggregate 1-0)
The plots of Montepaschi's games in the playoff are similar. The opposite team (in this situation Armani Jeans) starts better, Montepaschi suffers for a half (36-37). Then in the third quarter Siena elevates his level (59-48). But finally there is the rally of the other team. Armani Jeans wasn't overfloated last night by Montepaschi, Melvin Booker (185-G-72, college: Missouri) and Dusan Vukcevic (201-F-75, agency: Interperformances) combined for 32 points. Danilo Gallinari (206-G/F-88, agency: Players Group) suffered a bit the choking defense organized by Pianingiani: 11 points (4/11). For Siena, MVP was the natural-elevator of the team Ksystof Lavrinovic (210-C-79) that scored 18 points and grabbed 5 rebounds. Terrell McIntyre (175-G-77, college: Clemson) had 23 with 5 assists. Rimantas Kaukenas (193-G-77, college: Seton Hall) came back after the injury scoring 8 points in 16'. He's the man that makes this team 'different'.


Danilo Gallinari, Where will he go in the NBA Draft? -by Glenn Wiley


Blessed with sound fundamentals, a high basketball IQ, quick feet, and the ability to shoot from all angles of the floor, where will Danilo go in the draft? Some experts have him going as high as number four and others at number ten. No matter which pick he is he is certain to make an impact immediately on the court. Hes actually been labeled as a point guard in a 6-9 frame. The inside scoop is the Knicks coached by Mike DAntoni, who was once a room and team mate with Danilo father while playing here in Italy, really likes him.
Danilo is currently playing in the semi-finals Italian championship where Im sure many NBA scouts are watching.


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LITHUANIA

Eurobasket.com All-Lithuanian LKL Awards 2007-08 -by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Zavackas


Brown


Hill


Dabkus


Petravicius
Player of the Year - Donatas Zavackas (203-F-80) of BC Siauliai
Guard of the Year - Marcus Brown (192-G-74) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Forward of the Year - Donatas Zavackas (203-F-80) of BC Siauliai
Center of the Year - Marijonas Petravicius (207-F/C-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Newcomer of the Year - Povilas Butkevicius (201-F-87) of Nevezis Kedainiai
Most Improved Player of the Year - Justinas Sinica (203-F-85) of Sakalai Vilnius
Bosman Player of the Year - Kenan Bajramovic (206-F-81) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Import Player of the Year - Marcus Brown (192-G-74) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Domestic Player of the Year - Donatas Zavackas (203-F-80) of BC Siauliai
Defensive Player of the Year - Arturas Jomantas (202-G/F-85) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Coach of the Year - Rimantas Grigas of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas

1st Team
Chris Hill (178-G-83) of Panevezys Techasas
Marcus Brown (192-G-74) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Donatas Zavackas (203-F-80) of BC Siauliai
Valdas Dabkus (202-F-84) of Aisciai-Atletas Kaunas
Marijonas Petravicius (207-F/C-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius

2nd Team
Hollis Price (186-G-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
DeJuan Collins (188-G-76) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Nerijus Varnelis (200-F-78) of Alytus Alita
Paulius Jankunas (204-F-84) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Marius Janisius (203-F-77) of Alytus Alita

Honorable Mention
Antonio Grant (196-F-77) of BC Siauliai
Saulius Kuzminskas (210-C/F-82) of BC Siauliai
Zydrunas Urbonas (198-F-76) of Alytus Alita
Justinas Sinica (203-F-85) of Sakalai Vilnius
Mindaugas Lukauskis (198-G-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Damir Markota (209-C/F-85) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Jonas Maciulis (200-G/F-85) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Kenan Bajramovic (206-F-81) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius

All-Domestic Players Team
Valdas Dabkus (202-F-84) of Aisciai-Atletas Kaunas
Donatas Zavackas (203-F-80) of BC Siauliai
Paulius Jankunas (204-F-84) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Marijonas Petravicius (207-F/C-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Nerijus Varnelis (200-F-78) of Alytus Alita

All-Imports Team
Chris Hill (178-G-83) of Panevezys Techasas
DeJuan Collins (188-G-76) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Marcus Brown (192-G-74) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Hollis Price (186-G-79) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Antonio Grant (196-F-77) of BC Siauliai

All-Bosmans Team
Marko Popovic (185-G-82) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Damir Markota (209-C/F-85) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas
Kenan Bajramovic (206-F-81) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Roberts Stelmahers (192-G-74) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Goran Jurak (203-F/C-77) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas

All-Defensive Team
Gintaras Leonavicius (194-G-83) of Nevezis Kedainiai
Arturas Jomantas (202-G/F-85) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Chuck Eidson (202-F-80) of Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
Antonio Grant (196-F-77) of BC Siauliai
Eurelijus Zukauskas (218-C-73) of B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas


Babrauskas returns to Lietuvos Rytas -by Simas Baranauskas
Steponas Babrauskas (197-G/F-84) signed a 2+1 year contract with Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius. Babrauskas has already played in Lietuvos Rytas in the 2003, 2005 and 2006. The player played in Italy this season (Cimberio Varese and Legea Scafati Basket - both Seria A) and in Latvia the season before. Lietuvos Rytas has already signed Donatas Zavackas and as unofficial sources say Marius Prekevicius in this offseason. There are also rumors about Roberts Stelmahers leaving the club.

A new LKL team in Kaunas (updated) -by Simas Baranauskas
Players of NKL champions 'Zalgiris-Sabonio mokykla' will play in LKL even after losing 2:0 to the last placed Suduva (LKL) in the relegation/promotion battle. Today (Friday) in the LKL board meeting the third team from Kaunas was accepted into the family of LKL.

The president of LKL Sarunas Kliokys later informed that a new team under the name of 'Kaunas' will be the the one, playing in the strongest Lithuanian league and 'Zalgiris-Sabonio mokykla' will still be playing in the second devision. The new team will have their own budget, arena and be a structure of it's own, having nothing in common with 'Zalgiris-Sabonio mokykla'. It's reported though, that many players from the old team will play in the newly created club.

Such talents as Povilas Butkevicius, Vitalijus Stankevicius, Andrius Aleksandrovas and Vladimir Stimac may play in this team. Last year 'Zalgiris-Sabonio mokykla' was the Euroleague junior champions.



Further changes in Lietuvos Rytas? -by Simas Baranauskas
Unofficial sources say that Lithuanian vice-champions Lietuvos Rytas has added another player to their roster. Marius Prekevicius (196-F-84, agency: Interperformances, college: S.Florida) is the second player from Siauliai, moving to Lietuvos Rytas this ofseason. Siauliai wanted to keep the point guard, but Lietuvos Rytas offered better conditions, said the director of Siauliai Adomas Klimavicius. Prekevicius averaged 10,1 points, 2,2 boards and 2.3 assists. The 24 year old player has already played in Sakalai, Anwil and Siauliai.

Standings - NKL
NKL Standings
1. Utenos 25-7
2. Palangos 22-10
3. Nafta Univ. 22-10
4. Prienai 22-10
5. Zalgiris-Sab. 21-11
6. Jonavos 20-12
7. Pakruojis 18-14
8. Pasvalys 17-15
9. Perlas 17-15
10. Akad.-MRU 14-18
11. Anyksciai 14-18
12. Silute 14-18
13. KKM-Aisciai 13-19
14. Delikatesas 11-21
15. LKKA-Atletas 9-23
16. Mazeikiai 6-26
17. Taurage 6-26


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MALI

U-18 African Championships Qualifiers Zone 2 The Schedule -by Kristian Santiago

Here are the schedules for the zonal qualifying tournament in Guinea (Zone 2) for the U-18 African Championships for men and women.

Of the five men's teams expected, four have made the trip, while Guinea Bissau pulled out. At the end of these playoffs, the first of each category will be qualified for the final stages to take place from 2nd until the 10th of October in Tunisia for women and from 16th until 26th of October 2008 in Cairo, Egypt for men.

The Schedule

22 Mai 2008

15H00 F GUINEA - MALI
17H00 M GUINEA - MALI
23 Mai 2008

09H00 M MAURITANIA - SENEGAL
24 Mai 2008

09H00 F MALI - GUINEA
11H00 M GUINEA - MAURITANIA
25 Mai 2008

09H00 M SENEGAL- MALI
26 Mai 2008

15H00 M MAURITANIA - MALI
17H00 M SENEGAL - GUINEA



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MONTENEGRO

Buducnost takes lead 2-0 in the final -by Eurobasket News
In the second game of the play-off final of Montenegrin A league Buducnost trashed Mogren on the road 101-63. Thus Buducnost take lead 2-0 in the final. As a remainder, reining Montenegrin champion thumped Mogren in the first game at home 115-90.

Buducnost opened the second match same as it was 5 days ago in Podgorica. Blue boys finished first stanza having comfortable lead 31-15. The team of head coach Dejan Radonjic continued at the same rhythm in the second quarter extending lead to 24 points at the half time. It is obvious that Mogren doesn't have quality to be an equal opponent to Buducnost, who had a very good season in Adriatic league playing against much better teams than Mogren. Actually Buducnost, through Adriatic league, earned a spot for ULEB Cup 08/09 qualifications. Anyway, visitors went into the last quarter with plus 39. Maximum lead during the game Buducnost had in 33rd minute. It was 89-45 for blue machine from Podgorica.

All Buducnost's players, except of Sehovic, added four or more baskets on this game. Vladimir Dasic (208-F-88, agency: Beo Basket) paced the winners scoring 25 points. Center Vladimir Dragicevic (205-C-86) dominated under the basket netting 19 points. Ex member of Bosnian National Team, Samir Leric (204-F/C-74), had 14 points in Mogren.


Mogren - Buducnost 63-101
(15-31,13-21,15-30,20-19)

Mogren:
Leric 14, Lalovic 12, Smiljanic 10, Boskovic 8
Buducnost: Dasic 25, Dragicevic 19, Popovic 11, Micov 11


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NBA

Boston appears vulnerable at home court -by Eurobasket News
Boston - Detroit 97:103

Detroit snapped a 9-game winning streak for the Celtics at home and drew level in the Eastern conference finals. Richard Hamilton (6'7''-G-78, college: Connecticut) scored 25 points to pace the Pistons as they overcame a nice performance from the Celtics Big Three. Paul Pierce (6'7''-F-77, college: Kansas) scored 26 points for the Celtics who had 15 straight wins at home before the game. Kevin Garnett (6'10''-F-76) contributed 24 points and 13 boards in a losing effort. Chauncey Billups (6'3''-G-76, college: Colorado) came up with 19 points and 7 assists as Detroit the home-court advantage from the Celtics and would look forward to surging ahead in the Motown on Saturday. Detroit challenged the hosts with a balanced offensive effort as Antonio McDyess (6'9''-F-74, college: Alabama) finished with 15 points, Tayshaun Prince had 14 and Rasheed Wallace tallied 13 points and 10 boards for the winners. The teams kept it tight in the first half before Antonio McDyess scored 5 straight points for the Pistons to give them a 50:43 lead at the interval. Boston opened the second half with a 15:4 run that propelled them back in front. However the Pistons quickly restored the lead and entered the fourth period up by 9 points. The visitors maintained the advantage throughout the fourth term and led 100:94 with 18 seconds remaining. Ray Allen (6'6''-G-75, college: Connecticut) hit a three-pointer to cut the deficit to 3 points. Rasheed Wallace was able to convert one free throw and later Tayshaun Prince sealed the winning outcome from charity stripe following Kevin Garnetts miss from downtown. Boston outrebounded the visiting side 39:31 but sank only 26% from beyond the arc. Detroit shot solid 50% from the field including 5/10 from the outside.

Boston: Paul Pierce 26, Ray Allen 25, Kevin Garnett 24+13 boards
Detroit: Richard Hamilton 25, Chauncey Billups 19, Antonio McDyess 15


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NCAA1

UNC forward Stepheson to transfer because of family reasons -by Eurobasket News
North Carolina forward Alex Stepheson (6'9''-F) is transferring because he wants to be closer to his family in California.

Stepheson said Friday in a statement that his family is facing unspecified health concerns. Stepheson is a Los Angeles native who was the backup to Deon Thompson at power forward. In two years he averaged 3.16 points and 3.36 rebounds.

Coach Roy Williams said he is disappointed but understands Stepheson's decision because 'by being closer to home, he will be able to provide the necessary support and help his family needs.'

School officials said they have granted Stepheson's request for a release. It was a move that permits him to contact other programs.

Courtesy of www.sportsline.com


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NCAA2

Herenda Gets Nod At Lowell -by Eurobasket News
Greg Herenda, a former assistant men's basketball coach at Massachusetts-Lowell from 1983-85, was selected as its head men's basketball coach following a nationwide search, Director of Athletics Dana Skinner announced recently.

Herenda, who spent the last year as head coach at Division III Cabrini College in Radnor, Pa., brings more than 20 years experience at all NCAA levels to the program. He succeeds Ken Barer, who resigned recently after seven seasons.

Herendas year at Cabrini followed one year as head coach at Elgin Community College (2006-07) in Elgin, Ill. and five years as the associate head coach at East Carolina University (2000-05) under Head Coach Bill Herrion, currently the head coach at New Hampshire.

Herenda also served as an assistant at Yale (1997-99) under Dick Kuchen, at Seton Hall (1994-97) and Holy Cross (1989-94) under George Blaney following a four-year spell at his alma mater Merrimack (1985-89) under Bert Hammell.

During his two years with the (then) Chiefs, Herenda played a large role in recruiting the ULowell team that won the 1988 NCAA Division II Championship. Herendas younger brother, Billy, played for the Chiefs from 1984-88.

Greg brings a breadth of experience and a reputation for building lasting relationships that will be beneficial as we attempt to strengthen the program and broaden its appeal to prospective student-athletes, alumni, and members of the Merrimack Valley basketball community, said Skinner. Hes come full circle, having started his career at Lowell, and were pleased to have him back as our head coach.

Herenda inherits a UML squad which finished 12-17 overall (8-14 in the Northeast-10 Conference/11th) and advanced to the quarterfinal round of the NE-10 Tournament with a 70-69 upset at Merrimack.

The River Hawks return six veterans from the 2007-08 team (four sophomores and two freshmen), including four starters. Also expected back is junior guard Brandon Shelton, who sat out the 2007-08 season.

Among the many highlights in his coaching career, Herenda helped lead Holy Cross to great success from 1989-94. The 1992-93 Crusader squad posted a record of 23-7 (12-2 conference) and captured the Patriot League Tournament championship and advanced to the NCAA Tournament where it suffered a 94-64 loss to Arkansas.

Additionally, Holy Crosss 1989-90 team captured the Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) North regular season championship and went on to earn an NIT bid where it lost at Rutgers (87-78).

Herendas three-year stay at Seton Hall was highlighted by a 16-14 finish and an NIT appearance in 1994-95.

During his four-year stay as an assistant coach at Merrimack, he helped guide the Warriors (22-10, 13-5 NE-10) to the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division II Championship in 1989. The 1985-86 Warriors compiled a 19-9 clip (9-5 NE-8) and advanced to the NE-8 Tournament final.

Over the past two years, Herenda guided Cabrini and Elgin Community College to remarkable improvements. Last year, Cabrini posted a 12-14 mark (9-7 Pennsylvania Athletic Conference/fifth), up from a 5-20 overall clip (4-14/ninth) in 2006-07.

Simultaneously, Herenda served as a lead analyst and color commenator for YES Networks Ivy League basketball telecasts.

The 2005-06 ECC team went 18-11 overall, won the Skyway Conference championship and reached the Region IV District B Junior College Championship game for the first time in school history.

A two-year player at Merrimack College, Herenda led the Warriors to a 17-10 finish (13-5 NE-8) in 1981-82 and a 14-13 clip (8-11 NE-8) in 1982-83. He still holds the school record for assists in a game (22) and shares the record for the single season average (9.0). He graduated in 1983 with degree in business administration and marketing.

A graduate of St. Peters Prep H.S., Herenda played for legendary coach Jerome Halligan.

Herenda and his wife Jillene have one son, Trey (6).

Source Massachusetts-Lowell


Seawolves Add Two -by Sanjey Noriega
From goseawolves.com

ANCHORAGE - Alaska Anchorage mens basketball coach Rusty Osborne announced Wednesday that guard Darren Nye and forward Casey Robinson have signed a National Letters of Intent to play for the Seawolves. Both players will have two years of eligibility when they come to UAA as juniors for the 2008-09 campaign.

Nye, 6-1, 175, was an All-Golden Valley Conference first-team selection as a sophomore last season, averaging 16.6 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game for College of the Redwoods in Eureka, Calif. His schools all-time assists leader, Nye shot 49 percent from the field, 43 percent on three-pointers and 85 percent from the free throw line. He was an honorable mention all-league pick as a freshman, putting up numbers of 10.0 ppg, 5.5 apg, 2.5 rpg, 49% FG, 40% 3FG and 78% FT.

Nye was a multi-sport high school star in his hometown of Corning, Calif., where he was an All-Northern Athletic League performer as both a junior and senior in basketball, and quarterbacked CHSs football team.

Darren is a multi-dimensional point guard who has shown he can score, but also distribute the ball effectively, said Osborne, whose Seawolves are coming off a 29-6 season and a trip to the NCAA Div. II semifinals. Obviously point guard is a high-need position for us after losing an All-American and our primary back-up. We feel Darren can fill that role very well.

Robinson, 6-6, 225, averaged 17.5 points and 4.5 rebounds as a sophomore at Eastern Wyoming College in 2007-08, earning All-Region IX honors. He shot 44 percent overall, 42 percent (82-197) from three-point range and 81 percent (142-176) from the free throw line. The versatile big man helped the Lancers to a 24-12 record and the NJCAA Region IX championship, putting up a season-high of 37 points against 2nd-ranked College of Southern Idaho during the regular season. Robinson was the second-leading scorer at the NJCAA National Tournament, totaling 52 points (10-20 3FG, 14-14 FT) and six blocks in EWCs two games.

Casey is a perfect fit for our system, Osborne said. He is a tremendous shooter but can also post up and get fouled as evidenced by his number of free throw attempts last year. As we replaced our graduating seniors, it was important to bring in mature, seasoned players who are ready to play at a high level. Casey fits all the criteria, both on and off the court.

Robinson was a decorated prep player in his hometown of Manila, Utah (pop. 300), where he led Manila High to Class 1A state titles as a junior (2005) and sophomore (2004). As a senior at MHS, he averaged 20 points and 12 rebounds per game, earning First Team All-State accolades from both the Salt Lake Tribune and the Deseret Morning News.

Nye and Robinson are the first members of UAAs 2008 recruiting class.


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NEW ZEALAND

Hawkes Bay Hawks stay third in the ladder -by Eurobasket News
The Hawkes Bay Hawks improved to 9-5 record and remained in the third position in the NBL ladder after beating the Manawatu Jets in Round 13 opener. Paora Winitana (195-G-76) scored 25 points to lead the Bay Hawks to a 92:76 win and left the Jets without a trace of hope for postseason birth. Kareem Johnson (205-C-80, college: Cincinnati) provided 19 points and Aidan Daly (182-G-78) scored 17 to pace the winners. The Bay Hawks thumped it hard in the second period stretching a 7-point first frame lead to 17 points. The Jets however refused to give in and answered with a 30:15 run in the third stanza to keep the intrigue alive. The Bay Hawks did not leave a chance for the visitors in the final term limiting them to 12 points and rolling to a comfortable win at the end. Kantrail Horton (185-G-77, college: Iowa St.) led the Jets with 33 points. Keith Davis (198-F-82) notched 17 points and Piers Finch had 15 in a loss.
Meanwhile the Dynamos Taranaki fell out of the playoff picture after losing to the Auckland Stars 65:68 yesterday. The Auckland Stars thus improved to 8-6 record and share the 5th spot with the Nelson Giants. Taranaki now appeared in the 7th spot with a 7-7 record with Auckland owning a tiebreaker over the Dynamos. With high stakes up for grabs Taranaki and Auckland put on a sizzling performance which saw a tight battle throughout the encounter. The sided were all square at 61 with just under 2 minutes to go. Keith Salscheider (196-G/F-82, agency: Sports Plus International, college: San Diego Chr.) scored a jumper to give the Dynamos a lead but it was overshadowed by a three-pointer from Casey Frank (203-F-77, college: N.Arizona). Aaron Nowell scored two free throws for Taranaki to regain the lead. Adrian Majstrovich knocked down a jump shot to put the game away for the Stars. Keith Salscheider had a chance to force overtime but his trey missed the mark and Auckland celebrated a vital victory at the end. Casey Frank led all scorers with 14 points and 11 boards. Reece Cassidy (200-F/G-82) came up with 13 points, while Jonathon Shepherd (191-G-81, college: Nova SE) had 10 in a win. Keith Salscheider replied with 13 points for the Dynamos. Tony Rampton dropped 11 points in a losing case.


Standings Men
NBL Standings
 1. Waikato 12-4 
 2. Wellington 10-4 
 3. G&H Hawks 9-5 
 4. Harbour Heat 9-6 
 5. Auckland 8-6 
 6. Nelson 8-6 
 7. Taranaki 7-7 
 8. Canterbury 4-11 
 9. Manawatu 4-11 
 10. Otago 2-13 


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NICARAGUA

More ACB news -by Gianni Pascucci
The officials of the Asociacin de Clubes de Baloncesto (ACB), anounced that each team of the league will be able to register up to five (5) import players. This unexpected move is a very interesting raising in the war between the Liga Premier and the ACB the same. Instead of today, the league tipoff has been rescheduled for Monday 26. Tiburones Bancentro have yet signed veteran imports Ivan Jaen (201-C-66) and Pedro Salazar (204-C-72), plus super scorer Henry Martinez (186-G/F-75, agency: Interperformances), from Costa Rica. The team is also negotiating with Hernol Hall (205-C-82, college: Lon Morris JC) and Panamanian Maximiliano Gomez (196-G/F-75) and Ricardo Yearwood (197-F-70, college: Briar Cliff). After signing Keyshawn Reed (183-G-84) and William Waterhouse (200-C-75), Tigres de la Universidad de Managua inked Jason Walters (196-G-71, college: Mt.Senario). Newly named Halcones Red Nicarao (formerly Aguilas) signed Tony Lane (200-F-75, college: UNLV) and Cesar Stling (198-F-74), from Honduras. Only two of the SIX teams of the ACB haven' t signed any import yet, Vikingos de Valentis Pizza and Delfines de la Bluefields Indian, but these teams are the same negotiating with some top domestic player currently competing in Liga Premier. There is more money in the ACB, at least it seems so...

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NIGERIA

Police mount road-block against Raptors -by Olusegun Ikuesan
Police Bombers basketball club will on Saturday take on Raptors basketball club in a Lagos City league pairing.

The Bombers coached by Mark Balogun (ASP) knows what is at stake if they must progress in the league as any slip to the Charles Ibeziakor tutored Raptors could spell doom to their playoff ambition.

The Bombers Vs Raptors game comes up 13.30 hours at the sports hall of the Lagos National Stadium.

Three matches were decided in the Lagos City League Thursday; Whales basketball club played the game of its live to survive the foray of Ikorodu Kings with a 56-54 points victory.

Premier League side Islanders basketball club out-dunked young Rookie Academy by 73-51 points, and even in defeat the young lads of coach Mark Balogun gave themselves pass mark as no one expected them to play the way they did against their more exposed opponent.

Peter Odia, Yemi Makanjuola and Emmanuel Balogun were outstanding on the Rookie line-up as they were bold enough to confront the Ogoh Odaudu tutored Islanders.

Union Bank basketball club recorded one of the easiest win of the day with an 85-40 points spanking of Flames basketball club.

..We are ready for Union Bank, says Customs Players


Nigeria Customs Service basketball club have set a must win target for their Saturday Atlantic conference premier league pairing against Union Bank basketball club in Lagos.

The Elder Gyang Buba Border Boy as the Customs are often referred to says nothing will stop them from taking the bankers who manage a 78-76 points victory over Dodan Warriors Tuesday to the cleaner.

And in far away Asaba Ebun Comets basketball club of Lagos will be the guest of Delta Force basketball club at the sports hall of the Asaba Township stadium.

The Warri-based Delta Force who is dreaded at home due to the non-availability of 24 seconds clock and visible electronic score-board must be ready with all the tricks they can muster to outwit a rejuvenated Comets as Dennis Ebikoro is set to lead the Ayo Bakare coached team challenge against the Force opposition.

Three games are on the bill in the Savannah conference of the premier league and this will see Yelwa Hawks basketball club of Bauchi playing at home to Plateau Peaks basketball club of Jos on Saturday.

Conference league leader, Niger Potters basketball club of Minna battles AHIP Giant basketball club of Kano and on Sunday Bauchi Net will entertain its fans when it take on Kano Pillars basketball club in what promises to be a thriller.
Michael Ohiero (188-G-88, college: Customs)


Players jostle to register for First Deepwater Discovery Six-A-Side Competition -by Olusegun Ikuesan
The Sports Complex of the University of Lagos is agog with activities toward Sunday First Deepwater Discovery Six-A-Side Basketball Competition.

The one-day competition according to the initiator, Nike Carew is aimed at giving the players another form of competition and showing of skills.

Nike, Managing Director of Nyk Concept says her outfit came up with the competition in order to contribute to the growth and development of the slamming and dunking game.

The First Deepwater Discovery competition tagged Bounce 9na Jump Zone will feature ten teams of six players each with one of the player as sub and will adopt all FIBA rules.

Players who are willing to be part of the competition are expect to go through the registration process which will last for two hours between 07.00 and 09.00 hours while hostilities begin at 10.00 hours.

The over-all winner of the First Deepwater Discovery competition will smile home with N150, 000; first runner-up will pocket N120, 000 while the 2nd runner-up will go home with N90, 000.


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NORWAY

BLNO update -by Kaare Vangen
Harstad Vikings have landed two important players for the upcoming season. Jeff Rogers (185-G-73, agency: Elfus-Siegel Management (ESM), college: W.Kentucky) will take two more years and Bendik Myhrer (191-G-85) will come from 3B. Rogers has been THE key player for Vikings who have built a lot of their offensive play around him. Myhrer was one of the most important guards in 3B and has shown good progress in his play the last two seasons.

Sandvika applied for a spot in BLNO but the request has been turned down. The team will have to play in Div 1 and try again next season.

Kristiansand Pirates will play in Div 1 after pulling out of BLNO. No coach or players have been confirmed officially so far. The club wants to have a return to BLNO in 2009. Division 1 will consist of 11 teams next season.

Audun Eskeland (176-G-85) who broke his leg in December 2007 is practising again and will hopefully be ready for next season for Ulriken Eagles. Ulriken seems to keep most of their Norwegian players.


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PARAGUAY

Sol de America restarts with a win -by Gianni Pascucci
Sol de America defeated Libertad 69-57 yesterday night in Asuncion in the opening game of the second led (Group A) of National League. Peter Kiganya (197-F-72, college: Abil.Christian) scored 19 points and Renzo Ferrari (191-G/F-84) 13 at the winning side, while Daniel Perez (190-G/F-84) led Libertad with 12 pts in losing effort. The Group A goes on tomorrow night, with the game between Sol de America and Deportivo San Jose. The Group B, instead, starts tonight in Pilar, and the first game scheduled is Sacachispas - America

National League Standings
National Standings
Group A
 1. Sol de Am. 1-0 
 2. D.San Jose 0-0 
 3. Libertad 0-1 
Group B
 1. America 0-0 
 2. Sacachispas 0-0 
 3. Felix Perez 0-0 


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PBL

New teams join the PBL -by Gianni Pascucci
The 'big escape' of the better organized teams from the ABA hasn' t stopped yet. The Premier Basketball League officially announced that the Quebec City Kebekwa, of Canada, have been accepted into the league and will begin play in the upcoming 2008/2009 season. 'Quebec solidifies the PBL's expansion into Canada,' said PBL Chairman of the Board Dr. Severko Hrywnak . 'We have strong ownership groups in Canada which only adds to the overall strength of the league. Basketball fans in Canada have much to be excited about.' In the same time, the league announced that a franchise from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, have joined the PBL as an expansion team for the upcoming season. The team will be named Montreal Sasquatch and its ownership group is headed by Real Bourassa, CEO of Groupe Conseil Refrence Inc. The day after, it was announced that another team has joined the league, this too from the ABA, even if played only few games in 2007-08 season. The name of the team is Detroit Panthers, and is owned by Detroit native and successful businessman Kevin A. Carter , Chairman of the Carter Organization, Inc. The total number of teams announced to play in the PBL in 2008-09 season is now 13 and 11 of them were originally in the ABA. At this point, we are expecting a move from the Halifax Rainmen, another former ABA team that could join the PBL soon...

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PORTUGAL

Miguel Graca had a knee surgery -by Bruno Baltazar

In the past Wednesday,Barreirense player point guard Miguel Graca (186-G-87) did a surgery on his right knee ,to remember he got injured in a practise weeks before the start of the playoffs.
The doctors said the operation went good and he is expected to return home tomorrow.
In the past 2 seasons he been suffering some injuries with more or less level of danger,this season he had many minuts given by Barreirense coach Antnio Paulo Ferreira,a young portuguese promiss that we hope can return soon to competition.


In other Bareirense news,now at the youth level,they won the under 18 national tournament played the past week,very disputed games with a close win for Barreirense ,even if they lost the last game against Porto (46-44),Porto had to win by over 10 points in the game against Barreirense,they tried to score in their own basket but that didnt happened and the win goes for Barreirense.


The team roster is the fallowing:

Tiago Raimundo (Cap), Carlos Sico, Henrique Sico, Felipe Pinheiro, Joao Miguel Guerreiro, Eric Fernandes, Eugenio Silva; Alex Coelho, Felipe Sousa, Ruben Dias, Claudio Carvalho, Umaro Djalo, Miguel Queiroz, Joao Mesquita, Onesimo Noana, Antonio Rocha, Augusto Miranda, David Soares, Diego Carvalho, Andre Agipa, Sandro Caneira, Francisco Pires.

Head coach; Jose Francisco Asisstant coachJose Miguel Salgueiro



Miguel Queiroz first portuguese to compete in the NBA Without Borders -by Bruno Baltazar
Miguel Queiroz is living a dream week ,after winning the under 18 national title with Barreirense and having a new brother,the bigger news for portuguese basketball is that he is the first portuguese ever to be invited to compete in the NBA Without Borders 2008 in Europe-Turkey from 4-7th June,he will compete in the under 19 section.
This camp is all about learn new things,from the technical part to the sportive side,the personal side ,compete and speak with athlets from all over Europe and show the basketball skills to the NBA scouts ,coaches and players.

Just to leave a idea on what we speaking ,here's a list of some of the persons involved in this showcase:
NBA PLAYERS - Bruce Bowen (San Antonio Spurs), Randy Foye (Minnesota Timberwolves), David Lee (New York Knicks), Mehmet Okur (Utah Jazz), Hedo Turkoglu (Orlando Magic), Mickael Pietrus (Golden State Warriors).

NBA STAFF-Tom Barrisse (New Jersey Nets), Jim Boylan (NBA), Dwane Casey (NBA), Ed Pinckney (Minnesota Timberwolves), Joe Prunty (Dallas Mavericks), Jay Triano (Toronto Raptors), Russell Turner (Golden State Warriors), Marin Sedlacek (FIBA/NIKE Clinician), Max Benton (Cleveland Cavaliers).


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PUERTO RICO

Standings - BSN
BSN Standings
Super 6
 1. Arecibo 7-0 
 2. Santurce 6-0 
 3. Carolina 5-0 
 4. Guaynabo 4-0 
 5. Fajardo 3-0 
 6. Caguas 2-0 
Others
 1. Bayamon 16-16 
 2. Humacao 16-16 
 3. Ponce 15-17 
 4. San German 15-17 
 5. Mayaguez 7-25 
 6. Guayama 6-26 


Guaynabo wins its final game against Santurce -by Luis Ramirez

The Conquistadors avoided a sweep of their series with the Santurce Crabbers as the Conquistadors got a penetration shot from Carmelo Antrone Lee with just 7 seconds left in the game to beat the Crabbers 71-70. Guaynabo took the 1st quarter 19-14, but the Crabbers came back in the 2nd quarter to tie the game at the half 36-36. In the 3rd quarter the Crabbers took a 1 point advantage as the quarter came to an end 52-51. This set up the final quarter to be anyone's game as both team battled each other until the shot from Lee to give the victory to Guaynabo. For Guaynabo, Carlos Escalera (190-G-79, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Missouri So.) scored 25 points followed by Jack Michael Martinez with 20 points and 9 rebounds. For Santurce, Larry Ayuso (190-G-77, agency: Edge Sports, college: USC) scored 22 points followed by Ricardo Dalmau with 14 points.


Over at Arecibo, the Captains sweep their 3 game series against the Fajardo Cariduros as they beat Fajardo 98-83. The 1st quarter ended tied at 16 points, but then Arecibo went on an offensive run in the 2nd quarter to take a 16 point lead to end the 1st half 46-30. Fajardo would not be able to make up this difference in the 2nd half although they did play hard in the 2nd half they would never catch the Captains. For Arecibo, Angel Figueroa (196-G/F-81, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Dowling) scored 22 points followed by Brandon Hunter with 21 points and 10 rebounds. For Fajardo, Javier Mojica (190-G-84, college: Cent.Conn.St.) scored 21 points followed by Kevin Hamilton with 15 points.



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RUSSIA

Play-off final: 2-0 for CSKA ! -by Eurobasket News
At the front of 3.500 spectators CSKA made another victory against Khimky 74-66. The hosts made a big step forward to another trophy this season. Tonight's game was much interesting than the first one when CSKA destroyed its opponent.
Khimky showed much better performance tonight as it was last night. Actually in the first quarter they totally took control on current Euroleague champion ending the first stanza 13-20. It was kind of Khimky's reaction regarding its poor performance yesterday. Visitors succeeded to keep advantage until the half time. It seems that head coach Messina said a lot of things to his players as they returned on court with totally different attitude. That resulted with 22-16 at the third quarter. Thus teams went into the crucial period equalized. Khimky was looking for a chance but CSKA continued at the same rhythm intensifying its defense even more. Visitors struggled with their shot as they had only 19 of 42 for FG2. At the end, it was more than enough for the comfortable 2-0 lead for CSKA in the final of play of.

Trajan Langdon (192-G-76, college: Duke) was unstoppable netting 20 points for 28 minutes. Hero from the last night, Matjaz Smodis (205-F-79), finished the game with 16 points and 4 boards while Euroleague MVP Ramunas Siskauskas (197-G-78) scored 15 points including 6 rebounds. Khimky got the most from Pat Burke (208-C-73, college: Auburn), who almost registered double-double. He collected 17 points and 9 rebounds. Clay Tucker (194-G-80, agency: Pro One Sports, college: Wisc.-Milwaukee) followed him with 14 points.


CSKA - Khimky 74-66
(13-20,18-16,22-16,21-14)

CSKA:
Langdon 20, Smodis 16 (4 rebs), Siskauskas 15 (rebs)
Khimky: Burke 17 (9 rebs), Tucker 14, Lampe 9 (7 rebs)


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SCOTLAND

Archibald is closer to triumph -by Eurobasket News

Robert Jr. Archibald (211-C/F-80, agency: Priority Sports, college: Illinois) is 2-1 in the Final series with his Azovmash against Kyiv in Ukraine. The latter left Azovmash Mariupol no chances in game 1 of the Finals as Kyiv defeated the defending champions 91:72 to take a 1:0 series lead. Kyiv controlled the flow of the game in the second, extending their advantage to 14 points at the half. Pooh Jeter had a game-high 28 points, while Artur Drozdov added 26 and 7 rebounds in the win. Robert Jr. Archibald collected 5 points and 10 rebounds in defeat.
Azovmash Mariupol defeated BC Kyiv 76:81 in Game 2 of the Superleague Finals, in spite of a fantastic 4th quarter surge by the home side. Kyiv managed to get back in the game early in the 3rd frame, trailing after the first half but an 11:1 response cooled them down and the margin grew to 21 at the start of the last quarter. Robert Jr. Archibald nailed 5 points and collected 6 boards.
In Game 3 Robert Jr. Archibald top-scored for his team with 19 points as Azovmash grabbed 67:65 win. Azovmash had 10 points advantage at halftime and led by as many as 13 points two minutes into the third quarter. The defending champions held the score for good and is one step now from the trophy.

The Final series in Ukraine until 3 wins, so Azovmash needs another home win to triumph. Scottish player spends an outstandins season there and hopes to take Gold with his team. Eurobasket will follow the decisive games and will post the news about the winner.


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SENEGAL

Senegalese-Cup: Semi-finalists are known -by Kristian Santiago
UGB - DUC: 68-54
In St. Louis, UGB routed the fellow students from Dakar 24 points difference.

JA-SIBAC: 66-55
SIBAC started well into the game under the captaincy of Massamba 'Ass' Ndiaye who scored ten points in the first quarter, but JA bounced back thanks to its players Fallou, Alioune Diouf (194-F-87) and Louis Adams (-87) in the second period of the game.

Douanes-Goree: 70-67
Douanes has beaten Goree a second time.'PaaBi' Gueye, Simon and Hassane helped Douanes to a lead by 11 points less than three minutes before the end of the game.
But Goree rallied back eventually due to a couple of three-pointers gunned by Papa Bodian (190-G-86), Baba and Elhadji Diakhate (203-F-87), still, Douanes survived the late attack and advanced.

ASFA-Bopp: 65-61
ASFA eliminated the St.ichel Cup winner Bopp who were led by El Hadji Malick Gadiaga (189-G-81) (MVP candidate this season after being the best scorer of the St.Michel Cup).
Asfa played a very physical game and had their best in Elyse who scored by a couple of three-pointers and Beidy who pulled down a lot of boards.


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SERBIA

Igor Milosevic remains at Crvena Zvezda -by Dragan Jankovski

Point guard Igor Milosevic (193-G-86) and management of BC Crvena Zvezda from Belgrade extended contract for one more season. After serious injury and almost 9 months of recovering period, Milosevic played 17 minutes against Borac Cacak at the previous round of Serbian Superlegaue.

At the interview for the Serbian newspapers 'Sportski Zurnal' Milosevic said: 'I am not in a good shape as I get tired very quick. It is the biggest problem for me at the moment. But what is the most important I am mentally very strong and I know that my time is coming. This summer will be crucial period for me to work hard and continue where serious injury stopped me.'


On the question about his ambitions for the next season Milosevic said: 'The team expects from me to be the starting point guard and it is the main reason why I have extended my contract for one more year. I will repeat once again that I have to work very hard this summer in order to be capable to take this position next season. However it doesnt mean that I am not able to help my teammates now. I feel better and better every day.'

Milosevic later continued: 'Work with Omar Cook extremely helped me. In the past I also had a chance to work with some top European players, as Dimitris Diamantidis. I spent 3 years with him and I learned a lot.'

About Zvezda's willingness to fight for the title this season Milosevic thoughts are: 'We are not favorites but title is our main target always. Play-off is not like regular season and one game can change a lot of things. I am sure we are capable to beat any rival in Serbia.'



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SIERRA LEONE

YSC, YMCA in Play-Off Semi -by Kristian Santiago
By Sahr Morris Jr (The Concord)

YSC and YMCA will challenge each other today in the Western Area Basketball Association (WABA) at the National Stadium Basketball court in the best of three semi final playoff.

According to WABA organizing secretary, Alhaji Haroun Sesay four teams, YSC, YMCA, Canon Royals, and Central Phoenix, made it to the semi finals after a hectic first round competition Canon Royals will also engage Central Phoenix in the second match of the day.

Sesay revealed that the teams will play each other three times.

'If any team wins two matches they will automatically qualify to the play off finals which will also be played on best of three,' Sesay said.

He also revealed that WABA has held a day seminar with the clubs where explained the game new rules.

Sesay warned none semifinalist players, officials and fans that they (WABA) will not tolerate any ball in the court except the playing teams.

How they qualified to semi finals YSC 6. Bel - Air Canon Royals 7. Forceans YMCA 8. Ashonix Central Phoenix 9. Freetown Lakers Lumley Dreams 10. Dinka B


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SLOVENIA

Matjaz Smodis paces CSKA in game 1 of Russian final -by Eurobasket News
Matjaz Smodis (205-F-79) was the key player of CSKA in the final of Russian play-off, game 1. Current Euroleague champions outplayed Khimki at home 97-76 making a step forward to another title this season.

Smodis, who signed new 3+1 contract with CSKA, had wonderful last night as he collected 25 points and 6 rebounds with nice shot percentage. He had 6/7 FT, 7/8 FG2 and 2/7 from behind the arc for almost 30 minutes.
CSKA played impressive first stanza ending it 33-18. Khimik's players could not believe what happened at those 10 minutes but they showed slightly better performance at the second period. After the half time, CSKA continued with smashing its opponent, who did not even threat in this game. Comfortable plus 21 points at the end for CSKA is a real picture what happened last night in Moscow.


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SPAIN

Barca bouncing with joy in Badalona! - ACB Play-Off Semi-Finals -by Paul Nilsen
Barcelona drew first blood in the big Play Off semi-final derby series with DKV Joventut after claiming a hard fought 93-90 victory over the home team in front of over 10,000 fans packed into the Palacio de Deportes de Badalona.

The game started with Joventut gaining the upper hand thanks mainly to the strength of Jeroime Moiso in the paint and his defensive work with one particularly spectacular block. LaPenya went 24-15 ahead but Barcelona pulled it back to 24-20 with some quick scores by a resurgent Alex Acker, a player that has thrived under Coach Pascual.

There was little to choose between the sides in a close second quarter and at the half time break, Badalona were still four points ahead at 42-38. The third quarter was the most spectacular of the game. With the home team extending their advantage to 49-42, Barca led by the classy and dangerous play Jaka Lakovic went on a 14-3 run to take the lead.

That had Rudy and Co chasing the game and ultimately they never recovered with Barca clinging to victory from the free throw line in the final quarter although Joventut led by Fernandez did get to within a point in the closing stages as he also had a three-point effort to force overtime in the last second but it never looked as if it was Badalonas night once Barca had got their noses in front during the second half.

Alex Acker was as cool as ice from the free-throw line and he made 15 of 16 free throws to help seal the game on his way to 20 points and 5 rebounds. Acker was well supported by Jaka Lakovic of course who had 23 points and 6 assists while Turk Ersan Ilyasova (207-F-87) just gets better and better - a true star in the making with a double-double of 16 points and 14 rebounds.

For Coach Pascual it was a magnificent victory and he is just one home win away from making the ACB final series while for Coach Reneses he will know that his team can and may well bounce back but they are now on the back-foot. That is despite another great performance by Rudy who didnt deserve to be on the losing team with 30 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists. Moiso had 20 points and three huge blocks while Ricky Rubio had a real mixed night with 6 assists but he was 1 of 9 from the field and that was pivotal in the context of this tight game.

But what a second game it promises to be.


Bilbao Basket extends three important players -by Eurobasket News
After second defeat in Spanish play-off quarterfinals, head coach of Bilbao Basket, Txus Vidorreta, announced that the team extended contracts with Drago Pasalic (208-C/F-84), USA forward Quincy Lewis (201-F-77, college: Minnesota) and Serbian Predrag Savovic (197-G-76, college: Hawaii).

22 year old Pasalic joined Bilbao during the previous summer. He had 35 appearances in ACB averaging 5.4 ppg and 3.3 rpg. Last game of Bilbao was maybe the Pasalic's best one. He added 13 points and 6 rebounds against Barca. Details about his new contract are not announced yet.

Quincy Lewis also agreed terms with Bilbao to remain at the club. Lewis played all 36 games in ACB having a bit better stats than Pasalic, 8 ppg and 3 rpg. Before Bilbao, Lewis spent one year in Etosa Alicante where he also played two seasons 5 years ago. He was a member of Greek Olympiakos on season 05/06 while a year before he spent some time at Minnesota Timberwolves.

Bilbao's last signing was Serbian Predrag Savovic, who is member of the team since 2004. Before his move to Bilbao, Savovic played for Spriou Charleroi. He had a short episode in NBA as a player of Denver Nugets but he had a big problems with his ankles. He sprained it three times in period of four months.

Bilbao has just finished the best season in its history. They get promoted to the ACB four years ago. This year the team finished regular season on 6th position having nice score, 21 wins and 13 defeats. They also reached semifinals of Spanish National Cup (Copa del Rei) what is another best result ever.


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SWITZERLAND

Lausanne Morges Basket got new reinforcement -by Eurobasket News
Dutch forward Harvey Van Stein (197-F-78, college: Cent.Conn.St.) extended contract with Lausanne Morges Basket for one more season. Van Stein moved from British team Paws London Capitals to Lausanna at the beginning of January. Before Capitals, he used to play for Spanish Cajasur Monrila and Caja Rural Mellila. He also spent one year in Finland as a member of UU-Korihait. Van Stein had a good season 04/05 in Finland where for 16 games he averaged 15.4 ppg and 5.9 rpg.

Laussane finished LNA on not so good 10th position this season. They registered 7 wins and 15 defeats.


Latest transactions from Switzerland -by Kristian Santiago

Guillaume Sene (197-G/F-86) and Kevin Corre (202-F-85) signed in BC Boncourt for the 2008-2009 season with an option for 2009-2010.
Sene arrives from Angers BC 49 where he played in the French Pro B and averaged 9,7 ppg and 3,3 apg, while Corre played for Hermine Nantes Atlantique where he recorded 9,9 ppg and 7,2 rpg.

Steve Louissant (187-G-87) will be part of the senior-team after being aligned to it during the past season after evolving at the junior-level.
Marvin Pilot (180-G-90) from Luxemburg is also moving into the team after a season with the juniors.

Canadian Stephen Sir (198-G-82, college: N.Arizona) is leaving BC Boncourt despite a contract proposal by the club and Lufti Sakiri (194-F-87) is also leaving towards a team in the LNB.

Sdent BBC Nyon got a big name on the bench next season: Hugues Occansey is going to coach Sdent BBC Nyon in 2008-2009 with an option for another year. The same team extended the contract of Julien Rahier (193-G-83, agency: LBM Management) for another year.

JoJo Garcia (208-C-70, college: Louisville) signed for
BC Lugano Tigers to play in the current play-offs, arriving from Cyprus where he played for Aspis Apoel Nicosia.

Bernex Onex Basket renewed the contract of coach Claude Ciani for another season.



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TUNISIA

Nabeul crowned champions ! -by Kristian Santiago
Stade Nabeulien sweeped the final series with three wins over J.S.Kairouan and took home the Tunisian Championship.
In a hard-fought game in Kairouan, Nabeul needed the over-time to defeat the hosts 99-89 after a 81-81 score during regular time.
With six championships already under their belt, Nabeul sealed the seventh championship thanks to the likes of Amine Rezig (198-G/F-80), Majdi Maalaouli (202-C/F-77) and Mohamed Hdidane (205-F-86).


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U.KINGDOM

Sullivan eliminates in the semis -by Eurobasket News
Andrew Sullivan (203-F-80, college: Villanova) and his Dexia Mons-Hainaut lost the semifinal campaign in Belgium to Spirou. The latter overcame Dexia Mons-Hainaut 73:54 away from home to get the ticket to the Final. Andrew Sullivan's team struggled a lot and being the home team opened the game with 21:17. They still led the game for good with 36:34 when the teams left the court for the break. Spirou Basket Charleroi became another team in the second half and dominated the court. A 5:14 in the last quarter was fatal for the hosts that had to admit the loss. Jonathan Tabu top-scored for Charleroi with 14 points. Tremmell Darden added 12 and Andre Riddick and Jerry Johnson had 10 each for the winners. Ben Ebong led Mons with 13 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals. Andrew Sullivan produced 7 points in the losing effort.
Joel Freeland (208-F-87) could not help Gran Canaria to reach the play-offs in Spain. Real Madrid finished as the winners of the league title and they underlined that they will be the team to beat in the play-offs with a devastating performance in Gran Canaria where they brutally dismantled the hosts who were low on confidence after missing out on the play-offs by 79:98. Real had a 20 point margin at the midway point and were in control from tip to buzzer as they produced a fluent and slick performance with 26 assists highlighting some great ball movement from the Whites - as did no fewer than seven players reaching double figures. Joel Freeland nailed 4 points in that game and made 5 boards.


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U.S.VIRGIN ISLANDS

Dirty Jobs: Game prep with NBA stopper Raja Bell -by David Edole

Every title-worthy team has one -- a guy who embraces the thankless role of defensive enforcer. You know the type. More interested in taking a charge than being the star. Typically described by teammates as always being 'ready to battle' or 'doing whatever it takes to win,' which often is just opponent code for 'Man, that guy plays dirty,' the se guys would just as soon stick an elbow in your schnoz as make a jumper in the lane.

The Suns' Raja Bell (196-F/G-76, agency: Interperformances, college: Florida Intern.) uses more than elbows to do his job as a defensive stopper. Remember two years ago when he made like a clothes line and dropped Kobe Bryant in the playoffs? Bell's behavior earned him a suspension, and his tough talking -- he called Bryant pompous and said, 'I don't respect him' -- earned him a reputation as a guy not to be messed with. His style worked. Kobe averaged 24.2 points -- 11.2 under his season average -- in th e series when Bell played. In the game Bell was forced to sit, Bryant scored 50 .

Bell has been regarded as one of the league's top defensive wing players since that series and made an all-defensive team the past two seasons (first-team in 2006-07 and second-team in 2007-08). With Bryant tearing up the playoffs -- he's averaging 5.0 points above his 28.3 regular season average -- any remaining team would love to have Bell on its roster.

Taking on the toughest defensive assignment requires Bell to bring a certain attitude to every game. But how does he generate such intensity? Does he sit in a dark room, staring at walls and sharpening his elbows? Does he blast Guns N' Roses on his iPod? Does he go for a triple espresso with a Red Bull chaser?

Before the Suns' season ended in the first round (don't blame Bell -- he held San Antonio's Manu Ginobili below his season average), Bell gave us a behind-the scenes look at his game-day routine.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Bell follows the same pregame ritual before every home game but also adds plenty of touches that best can be described as unique. Start with how he gets dressed. He arrives at U.S. Airways Arena at least 90 minutes before tipoff and changes into his uniform. Well, sort of. The first thing Bell does is take off his shirt and put on his game jersey. Then he finishes changing out of his civvies and into his game shorts, socks and shoes. Once he has his shoes on, he takes off his game jersey and puts on a warmup shirt.

'Maybe I forgot before I was going out to warm up one day, put on my jersey and didn't realize it,' Bell says. 'Knowing me, if I had a good game, I stuck with it. I can't even remember when it started.'

The routine then takes a turn toward normal. Bell checks with a Suns staffer to make sure his game tickets will get to the right folks. He grabs a cup of coffee, some cream, a few sugars. Once changed, he visits the training room so the medical staff can 'make sure my body's working.' Unlike most players, he doesn't have his ankles taped, but he needs a sometimes-balky back worked on. Bell stays in the training room until the countdown clock to tipoff reads 60 minutes.

Time for early shooting and, yes, he's a little uptight about this as well. Most players have an assistant coach they partner with to pass them the ball during these drills. Bell always hooks up with the same assistant. 'I have to make 10 jump shots from five spots in 2-point range,' he says. 'Then I make seven 3s from each corner, then five 3s off the move from three spots around the perimeter. If I don't make each set within a reasonable attempt, I'll start over. The goal is to find your groove, to start feeling confident with your shot.'

To get comfortable with his shooting typically takes Bell about 20 minutes. All the practice has paid off. Since signing with the Suns as a free agent in 2005, Bell has become known almost as much for his 3-point shooting as for his defense. In the past three seasons, he is second in the league to Ray Allen in made 3-pointers and eighth in 3-point percentage.

His pregame shooting completed, Bell returns to the locker room, typically with about 40 minutes left before tipoff. The Suns break into group meetings, with the big men gathering in a meeting room and the guards staying in the spacious locker room, which features a big-screen TV in the middle of two large greaseboards. On one are scouting tips for that night's game (Force Ginobili LEFT, says one). On the other is a running tally of individual hustle stats such as deflections.

Before Bell sprawls out to stretch during the guards' meeting, he puts ice in a cup and places it in his locker. 'For the Red Bull I'll drink later,' he says. 'You never know. I might not have time to get the cup ready between meetings.' After the 10-minute group meetings, the bigs join the guards in the locker room for final instructions from the head coach. While Mike D'Antoni delivers his pregame speech, Bell downs his Red Bull.

Then he's ready for the pregame layup line. The Suns gather in a circle outside their locker room for group hugs and high-fives. Point guard Steve Nash leads the charge through the tunnel onto the court, running past a gathering spot that has been cordoned off for high-end ticket holders. Right behind Nash is Bell, who makes a point of jumping up and 'pretending to do some kind of crazy dunk' on the tunnel overhang.

When the countdown to tipoff reaches 6 minutes, Bell is warmed and ready. Too warmed, in fact. 'I have a lot of extra energy at that point,' he says. To keep from burning out, he heads back to the locker room to chill out by himself. 'It started once when I had to pee, then it became a habit,' he says. 'If I'm out there, I am going to be warming up hard and I've done enough at that point. I want to calm down for a bit. I'm still pretty good and warm and on my second wind when the game starts.' Inside the locker room, he finds a quiet spot, grabs a water and slows his heartbeat. When you don't see him on the floor with his teammates for the national anthem, you know he's still chilling. He makes his way back to the court before the starting lineups are introduced.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The early part of game day lacks some of the idiosyncrasies of the pre game routine, but it's just as structured. Bell rises at 8 for a breakfast of oatmeal and yogurt, joined usually by his wife, Cindy, and 1-year-old son, Dia. He leaves his Paradise Valley home at 8:45 to arrive at the arena in plenty of time for 10 a.m. shootaround .

After shootaround, Bell handles any media requests. Many players will talk to reporters after shootaround but then will not speak to the media again until after the game. Bell doesn't have such self-imposed rules. 'There's a lot of stars on this team,' he says. 'It's not like I'm sought after that often.'

Before heading home , Bell visits the hot and cold tubs for treatment. He slips into the icy water up to his chest. After 3 minutes in the cold, he goes 2 in the hot. Three more cold, followed by 2 more hot and then he ends with 3 minutes in the cold. 'That's the best way to make sure any swelling is down,' he says.

From the arena, he drives back home or meets his wife and son for lunch. They always dine at the same place -- an Original House of Pancakes restaurant not far from home -- at around the same time, 12:30. Bell does not always order the same meal. 'I'm not that anal,' he says. His order includes pancakes sometimes, or eggs and toast, juice but no coffee. 'No caffeine yet,' he says.

He spends the afternoon at home, going down for a 2-hour nap at 2. Cindy serves the same pregame meal -- whole wheat pasta with marinara sauce, bread and water -- shortly after 4. For the typical 7 p.m. start, Bell is on the road by 4:45 to be downtown 90 minutes before tipoff. Upon arrival at the arena, he exchanges the same pleasantries and fist-bumps with the same group of arena employees.

'I'm a creature of habit,' he says. Indeed -- and some habits are a bit odder than others.

Stan McNeal is a writer for Sporting News

www.rajabell.com is now in full swinggggggggggggggg.



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UBL

Oklahoma City OnPoint Hoopers -by Sarah Reed
Oklahoma City OnPoint Hoopers started the season on the right foot defeating the Texas Wranglers and then the Dallas Outlaws in their home gym at Southwestern Christian University. Game one against the Wranglers saw impressive play from vetran players, Taylor Lay (215-6'8-F) and Jonathan Reed (190-6'0-G). The younger players held their own as well with strong contributions from Brent Kimmel (180-6'0-G) and Milorad Damnjanac (230-6'9-C). Game two verses the Outlaws showed an even stronger success, but can the Hoopers take a win on the road?

After visiting the Arkansas Warriors and suffering two defeats the Hoopers travelled to Texas to see the Wranglers. Despite some impressive highlights from the likes of Bobby Carter (180-6'1-G) and Jonathan Reed the Hoopers could not bring home the win. To see game footage from Game four for the OnPoint Hoopers visit www.onpointhoops.com.

May 31, 2008, the Oklahoma City OnPoint Hoopers will play host to the UBL Tri-State Classic in Oklahoma City. Games will be filmed and available at www.onpointhoops.com. If you can't be there in person, don't miss the action on webcast.


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USBL

Proliga Finals Highlighted by New York Natives -by Surujh Roopnarine
Vitoria won its decisive fifth game against Academica in the Proliga semifinals and will now face off against Fiscia who finished fifth during the regular season. The match up will also be between two of the best imports in all of Portugal in Tommie Eddie (6'7''-F/C-82, college: Mississippi) and Marcel Momplaisir (6'9''-C-81, college: Rhode Island). Eddie, a former member of the Brooklyn Kings (USBL) and Strong Island Sound (ABA) and a native of Brooklyn, was named MVP of the Proliga after amassing an MVP index of 828 while leading the league in scoring (23.1ppg) and finishing second in rebounds (11.4rpg). The physically imposing forward had his multitude of talents on full display this season, scoring from inside while also connecting on 34% of his attempts from behind the arc. In his third full year out of Mississippi (NCAA) Gunzz as he is affectionately referred to has emerged as a force in the international basketball scene and an impressive showing in the finals will further lead to his ascension up the basketball ranks.
Momplaisir, a Queens, NY native out of Rhode Island manned the interior for Fiscia with impressive results. Finishing third in the MVP race with a 607 rating, the 69 big man averaged 15.3 points and 9.1 rebounds while posting a league-leading 1.6 blocks per game. Still relatively young at 26, Momplaisir is in his second season in the Proliga after having spent half of the 2006-07 season with Angra / Susiarte / Samsung. This is Marcels most action in a season (26 games) since leaving Rhode Island in 2005.
While the big men will be key focal points in the Championship series, let us not forget about two NY bred point guards who will be dictating the pace of the finals, in Vitorias John Winchester (6'4''-G-83, college: Robert Morris) and Fiscias Kendell Craig (6'2''-G-80, college: Adelphi). Winchester, who was born in Connecticut, cut his teeth on the playgrounds of New York and New Jersey while splitting his time collegiately between Tennessee and Quinnipiac, finally finishing up at Robert Morris (NAIA). Winchester has excellent size for a point guard, measuring in at 64 and has all the poise of a veteran guard 10 years his elder. Winchester averaged 18 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.8 assists while shooting 53% on two-point field goals and 37% from three.
Kendell Craig the veteran of the group, turning 28 in a week, also has the least heralded background, coming from DII Adelphi in New York. The Queens native had an impressive run in college, averaging over 16 points and five rebounds a game over four years. He also played briefly for the now defunct Westchester Wildfire of the USBL. This season for Fiscia, Craig averaged 18.8 points, 6.5 rebounds while shooting 52% on two-point field goals. In two head to head meetings with Vitoria, Craig scored 16 and 17 points respectively.
It will be interesting to see how these heavily relied upon imports meet the challenge and pressure of Championship basketball in Portugal.


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VENEZUELA

Standings - LPB
LPB Standings
 1. Trotamundos 28-6 
 2. Gatos 20-11 
 3. Cocodrilos 20-12 
 4. Guaiqueries 19-12 
 5. Marinos 19-14 
 6. Gaiteros 19-14 
 7. Dep.Tachira 12-20 
 8. Guaros 12-22 
 9. Panteras 8-26 
 10. Gigantes 7-27 




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Women News

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AUSTRALIA - Women

Hibbert and Thoresen win in Germany -by Eurobasket News
Katrina Hibbert (180-G/F-77, college: LSU) and Rebecca Thoresen (179-F-78) (179-F-78) win in Germany for their Wasserburg. For the 5th straight year TSV Wasserburg captured the DBBL-title. In game 4 of the finals against the Saarlouis Royals the team of Coach Hans Brei edged the host 75:73. The 2000 fans witnessed a dramatic encounter between the best two teams of this season. The Royals started the game 5:0 and won the first quarter 21:17. Saarlouis continued to impress in the second quarter, dominated the paint and was ahead 39:36 at the half. But Wasserburg came back. Between the 24th and 28th minute of the game the defending champ turned the score from 46:46 into 60:53. The players of Coach Brei stepped up in defense and managed to score with a higher percentage than in the first half now. However, the game remained close. With one minute left to play in the final period Wasserburg was ahead 75:73. Saarlouis' final shot missed, while Corry Berger got the rebound with 8 seconds left. The old and new German champion was led by Rebecca Thoresen who scored 22 points in the last game of the season, Diana Adela Pop added 15 points, Katrina Hibbert tallied 13 points, Katharina Kuehn added 9 points and 9 rebounds. Romy Baer scored 20 points for the Royals, Desire Almind added 18 points and 12 rebounds, Julie Anne Page had 12 points and 14 boards, Rachel Wojdowski finished the game with 11 points, while Isabelle Comtesse dished out a game-high 11 assists in defeat.
In the game before that TSV Wasserburg took the 2:1-lead in the finals of the DBBL. The defending champion defeated the Saarlouis Royals 88:64 at home Saturday. Alexandra Mueller was impressive, as the German international nailed 4 treys and finished the game with 20 points. Her teammate Katharina Kuehn added 19 points and 9 rebounds, Corry Berger scored 16 points and Rebecca Thoresen (179-F-78) netted 14. On the other end Desire Almind tallied a game-high 29 points and also pulled down 8 boards. Isabelle Comtesse followed with 11 points, but also turned the ball over 9 times. Julie Anne Page finished the game with 10 points and 9 rebounds. Game 4 will be played on May 16 in Saarlouis.
During 2007-2008 Katrina Hibbert averaged 17.6 points and 6.1 rebounds per game for Wasserburg. Since joining TSV back in 2006 she helped to capture two German championships and one Cup-title.


The Opals knock down Chinese Taipei in friendly -by Eurobasket News
Australia - Chinese Taipei 100:57

Australia and Chinese Taipei opened the series of friendly games yesterday. The Opals overwhelmed their opponents 100:57 in the series opener at the Bridgecoast Stadium in Terrigal. Natalie Porter (185-F-80) led the charge with 20 points. Emma Randall (188-C-85) contributed 19 points and 7 boards, while Hollie Grima (190-C-83, agency: LBM Management) had 18 points and 7 boards for the winners. Natalie Porter scored 11 points in the first frame to ensure a winning start for the Opals as they grabbed a 31:10 lead after the opening stanza. Chinese Taipei stayed competitive mainly due to a long-range artillery but Australia still came out on top capping the first half with an impressive buzzer-beating trey from Emma Randall. The Opals enjoyed a 25-point advantage at halftime and continued to mount the pressure on the visitors in the third period. Hollie Grima nailed 11 points in the third stanza and Australia remained ahead 74:43 after three quarters of action. Jennifer Screen (180-G-82) tipped off the fourth quarter with straight trebles and Australia ran away for good in this one. The hosts outrebounded their opponents 40:16 and forced Chinese Taipei to 16 turnovers. The Opals also converted 50% from the field including 61% from downtown. Chiang Feng Chun (184-F-81) dropped 15 points to lead Chinese Taipei. Wen Chi (169-G-84) provided 12 points in a losing effort. The next game is scheduled for today in Terrigal.

Australia: Natalie Porter 20, Emma Randall 19, Hollie Grima 18
Chinese Taipei: Chiang Feng Chun 15, Wen Chi 12


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CYPRUS - Women

Cyprus basketball national team wins on tour in Greece -by Nemanja Bjedov

In an attempt to revitalize womens basketball on the island and prepare for the Games of the Small States 2009 that will be held in Cyprus, the basketball womens national team traveled to Greece in order to play three friendly matches against local club teams.

In the first match that was played on Thursday night, Kalia and Sonia Papadopoulou (170-G-82) combined for 23 points to help Cyprus secure a maiden victory in a low-scoring game against the second division team G.C. Ayias Paraskevis 52-34.

'This is a great chance for us to get some experience and we will work hard in order to take advantage of this opportunity that was given to us,' said the national team head coach Antonis Konstantinidis referring to the friendly games in Athens.

He selected 13 players for this trip out of which five play for the the reigning champions of Cyprus, Proteas EKA AEL, Kalia Papadopoulou, Sofia Theodorou, Loukia Larkou, Stalo Phedonos and Yianna Kleanthous. Michaela Vezengova and Sonia Papadopoulou of the championship runner up Hypermarkets Dimos Keravnos and Sofia Theologou, Koulla Nicodemou and Nikolina Kouzi of Jubalar APOEL. While the final three, Stephani Kile, Petra Orlovic and Zoi Athanasiou all play in the Greek championship.

The second match on the tour is tonight against the second division group south champions Paleo Faliro Piraeus, while the final match is scheduled to tip-off tomorrow afternoon at 5 PM against the Greek champions Esperides Kallitheas.


SOURCE: www.cybasketball.com



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CZECH REPUBLIC - Women

Spain beats Czech Republic in Segovia -by Eurobasket News
Spain - Czech Republic 75:57

Spanish National team continues to prepare for the upcoming Olympic Qualifying tournament in Madrid. Yesterday Spain played the first out of two scheduled friendlies against Czech Republic team. Spaniards entered the game without their leader Amaya Valdemoro who was still resting her injured calf. Laura Nicholls (189-C-89) and Alba Torrens (184-F-89) came up with 5 straight points for Spain as they grabbed an early lead. Laia Palau (178-G/F-79) came up with a couple of treys in the first frame and the hosts enjoyed a 22:11 lead at the first intermission. Laura Nicholls and Isabel Sanchez opened the second frame with triples and Spain accumulated a 30:15 lead. Eva Viteckova (190-F-82) and Jana Vesela (194-F-83) paced the visitors as they cut the deficit a bit however Spanish team held to a 43:29 advantage at halftime. Elisa Aguilar (178-G-76, college: George Washington) nailed two treys in the third frame and the hosts stretched the margin to as many as 21 points midway through the third stanza. Czech team sparked late in the third stanza as they ignited an 8:0 run. Spanish team nevertheless remained in control over the last minutes and cruised to an overall victory at the end. Ana Montanana (186-F-80, college: George Washington) led all scorers with 20 points. Elisa Aguilar scored 10 points, while Laia Palau and Lucila Pascua (196-C-83) added 8 points apiece for the winners. Eva Viteckova answered with 14 points for Czech Republic. Jana Vesela netted 9 points in defeat. The teams will play again later tonight.

Spain: Ana Montanana 20, Elisa Aguilar 10, Lucila Pascua 8, Laia Palau 8
Czech Republic: Eva Viteckova 14, Jana Vesela 9, Marketa Mokrosova 8, Ivana Vecerova 8


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GREECE - Women

Maltsi in USK Praha -by Chris Mammides
The succesful guard Evanthia Maltsi (180-F-78) after a very good deazon in the Spanish league with Valencia where she was scoring 7.4ppg, 3rpg, 2.5apg and 2.3spg per game she will now be reallocating in the Czech Republic league with one of the best teams in the country and in the region, USK Praha Prgue will be her new stop. The Greek guard had already some other offers too from other leagues but she prefered to go to USK Praha for many reason. Evanthia Maltsi will be the third foreigner for the team of USK Praha, ever the previous two were the Croat Kirena and the Bosnian Matic. Maltsi's contract is for one year.

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JAPAN - Women

Japanese player tries hard for Phoenix -by Eurobasket News
Yuko Oga (170-G-82) played already 3 games for her Phoenix Mercury that however suffered their third straight loss at the start of the season.
The San Antonio Silver Stars rallied past hapless Phoenix 81:76 to hand over the second straight loss to reigning WNBA champs. Sophia Young fired 25 points to lead the San Antonio who were coming out of a sour season opener after losing to the Sacramento Monarchs. The Silver Stars held the visitors to a 2/15 field goal shooting in the second quarter and piled up an 11-point cushion at the interval. Phoenix stayed close in the second half and managed to trim the deficit to 6 points after Cappie Pondexter hit a trey midway through the final term. However the Silver Stars capitalized on a technical foul called on Diana Taurasi and stretched the gap to 9 points with just over 4 minutes left. Phoenix never recovered suffering the second consecutive loss in the regular season. Becky Hammon scored 14 points, while Erin Buescher added 13 for the winners. Cappie Pondexter dropped 23 points for the Mercury. Yuko Oga played only 4 minutes in the game.
Last night WNBA reigning champions could not handle the Seattle Storm 83:87 at home court. In the meantime it was the third consecutive victory for the Storm as they remained ahead of the Western conference. Lauren Jackson came up with 30 points and grabbed 9 boards to lead the Storm past hapless Phoenix. However the hosts did not look hapless in the first three quarters of the encounter as they got to an aggressive start. The Mercury led by 20 points in the first half and maintained a 13-point margin at the interval. Seattle trimmed it to 6 points heading into the fourth term and made the final push in the dying minutes. Sue Bird penetrated under the rim and converted a layup to give the Storm 82:81 lead with 33 seconds remaining. Lauren Jackson added two more free throws to stretch the advantage to 3 points but Diana Taurasi immediately cut it back to one with a jumper. She then fouled Sue Bird and the Storm point guard sank one free throw to keep the visitors in front 85:83. Cappie Pondexter had a chance to tie the game but missed her attempt while Lauren Jackson sealed it from charity stripe. Swin Cash contributed 19 points and 7 boards, while Sue Bird had 13 points for the winners. Diana Taurasi led the hosts with 23 points. Cappie Pondexter scored 21 points and Kelly Miller had 15 in a loss. For just 5 minutes of play Yuko Oga poured in a point.


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SPAIN - Women

Spain beats Czech Republic in Segovia -by Eurobasket News
Spain - Czech Republic 75:57

Spanish National team continues to prepare for the upcoming Olympic Qualifying tournament in Madrid. Yesterday Spain played the first out of two scheduled friendlies against Czech Republic team. Spaniards entered the game without their leader Amaya Valdemoro who was still resting her injured calf. Laura Nicholls (189-C-89) and Alba Torrens (184-F-89) came up with 5 straight points for Spain as they grabbed an early lead. Laia Palau (178-G/F-79) came up with a couple of treys in the first frame and the hosts enjoyed a 22:11 lead at the first intermission. Laura Nicholls and Isabel Sanchez opened the second frame with triples and Spain accumulated a 30:15 lead. Eva Viteckova (190-F-82) and Jana Vesela (194-F-83) paced the visitors as they cut the deficit a bit however Spanish team held to a 43:29 advantage at halftime. Elisa Aguilar (178-G-76, college: George Washington) nailed two treys in the third frame and the hosts stretched the margin to as many as 21 points midway through the third stanza. Czech team sparked late in the third stanza as they ignited an 8:0 run. Spanish team nevertheless remained in control over the last minutes and cruised to an overall victory at the end. Ana Montanana (186-F-80, college: George Washington) led all scorers with 20 points. Elisa Aguilar scored 10 points, while Laia Palau and Lucila Pascua (196-C-83) added 8 points apiece for the winners. Eva Viteckova answered with 14 points for Czech Republic. Jana Vesela netted 9 points in defeat. The teams will play again later tonight.

Spain: Ana Montanana 20, Elisa Aguilar 10, Lucila Pascua 8, Laia Palau 8
Czech Republic: Eva Viteckova 14, Jana Vesela 9, Marketa Mokrosova 8, Ivana Vecerova 8


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TAIWAN - Women

The Opals knock down Chinese Taipei in friendly -by Eurobasket News
Australia - Chinese Taipei 100:57

Australia and Chinese Taipei opened the series of friendly games yesterday. The Opals overwhelmed their opponents 100:57 in the series opener at the Bridgecoast Stadium in Terrigal. Natalie Porter (185-F-80) led the charge with 20 points. Emma Randall (188-C-85) contributed 19 points and 7 boards, while Hollie Grima (190-C-83, agency: LBM Management) had 18 points and 7 boards for the winners. Natalie Porter scored 11 points in the first frame to ensure a winning start for the Opals as they grabbed a 31:10 lead after the opening stanza. Chinese Taipei stayed competitive mainly due to a long-range artillery but Australia still came out on top capping the first half with an impressive buzzer-beating trey from Emma Randall. The Opals enjoyed a 25-point advantage at halftime and continued to mount the pressure on the visitors in the third period. Hollie Grima nailed 11 points in the third stanza and Australia remained ahead 74:43 after three quarters of action. Jennifer Screen (180-G-82) tipped off the fourth quarter with straight trebles and Australia ran away for good in this one. The hosts outrebounded their opponents 40:16 and forced Chinese Taipei to 16 turnovers. The Opals also converted 50% from the field including 61% from downtown. Chiang Feng Chun (184-F-81) dropped 15 points to lead Chinese Taipei. Wen Chi (169-G-84) provided 12 points in a losing effort. The next game is scheduled for today in Terrigal.

Australia: Natalie Porter 20, Emma Randall 19, Hollie Grima 18
Chinese Taipei: Chiang Feng Chun 15, Wen Chi 12


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U.KINGDOM - Women

Eurobasket.com All-English EBL Awards 2007-08 -by Eurobasket
#s#
#e#6


Copeland


Naylor


Gandy


Turner


Brown
Player of the Year: Kirby Copeland (178-G-85) of Rhondda Rebels
Guard of the Year: Kirby Copeland of Rhondda Rebels
Forward of the Year: Sarah Naylor (183-F-83) of Sheffield
Center of the Year: LaNedra Brown (188-C-81) of Rhondda Rebels
Import Player of the Year: Kirby Copeland of Rhondda Rebels
Domestic Player of the Year: Sarah Naylor of Sheffield
Bosman Player of the Year: Martina Gandzalova (180-G/F-78) of Rhonnda Rebels

1st Team
Kirby Copeland of Rhondda Rebels
Sarah Naylor of Sheffield
Stephanie Gandy (178-F-82) of Sheffield
Caroline Turner (184-F) of Solent
LaNedra Brown of Rhondda Rebels

2nd Team
Joann Overstreet of Solent
Martina Gandzalova of Rhonnda Rebels
Rehana Khalil (173-G-86) of Manchester
Ellen Hall (183-F-84) of Northumbria
Patricia da Silva (188-C) of London HA


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WNBA - Women

The Mercury losing skid continues -by Eurobasket News
The Phoenix Mercury suffered their third straight loss at the start of the season. This time the WNBA reigning champions could not handle the Seattle Storm 83:87 at home court. In the meantime it was the third consecutive victory for the Storm as they remained ahead of the Western conference. Lauren Jackson (6'5''-F/C-81) came up with 30 points and grabbed 9 boards to lead the Storm past hapless Phoenix. However the hosts did not look hapless in the first three quarters of the encounter as they got to an aggressive start. The Mercury led by 20 points in the first half and maintained a 13-point margin at the interval. Seattle trimmed it to 6 points heading into the fourth term and made the final push in the dying minutes. Sue Bird (5'9''-G-80, college: Connecticut) penetrated under the rim and converted a layup to give the Storm 82:81 lead with 33 seconds remaining. Lauren Jackson added two more free throws to stretch the advantage to 3 points but Diana Taurasi (6'0''-G-82, college: Connecticut) immediately cut it back to one with a jumper. She then fouled Sue Bird and the Storm point guard sank one free throw to keep the visitors in front 85:83. Cappie Pondexter had a chance to tie the game but missed her attempt while Lauren Jackson sealed it from charity stripe. Swin Cash (6'2''-F-79, college: Connecticut) contributed 19 points and 7 boards, while Sue Bird had 13 points for the winners. Diana Taurasi led the hosts with 23 points. Cappie Pondexter scored 21 points and Kelly Miller had 15 in a loss.
Meanwhile the New York Liberty posted their first win in the season downing the Washington Mystics 79:60 at home. Shameka Christon (6'1''-G/F-82, college: Arkansas) and Cathrine Kraayeveld (6'4''-F-81, agency: LBM Management, college: Oregon) nailed 17 points apiece to help the Liberty cruise to an overall win. New York piled up a 21-point lead at the interval and never looked back after the long break. Taj McWilliams-Franklin tallied 26 points and 12 boards for the Mystics. Alana Beard (5'11''-G/F-82, college: Duke) added 20 points as Washington suffered the second straight loss in the season.
Chicago also registered their first win in the season after they held off the Sacramento Monarchs 87:77 at UIC Pavilion. Armintie Price (5'9''-G-85, agency: LBM Management, college: Mississippi) exploded with career-high 22 points to propel the Sky past the Monarchs. Price received her 2007 Rookie of the Tear award before the game and looked inspired by the event tallying 4 assists and 3 steals in a winning effort. Candice Dupree dropped 22 points as Chicago improved to 1-1 record. Rebekkah Brunson (6'3''-F/C-81, agency: LBM Management, college: Georgetown) answered with 16 points for the Monarchs as they slipped to 1-2. Kara Lawson nailed 13 points for Sacramento as they committed 21 turnovers down the stretch.


Standings
WNBA Standings
Eastern
 1. Connect. S. 2-0 
 2. Detroit S. 2-1 
 3. Indiana F. 1-1 
 4. New York L. 1-1 
 5. Chicago Sky 1-1 
 6. Atlanta D. 0-1 
 7. Washingt. M. 0-2 
Western
 1. Seattle S. 3-0 
 2. L.Angeles S. 1-0 
 3. Minnesota L. 1-0 
 4. S.Antonio SS 1-1 
 5. Sacram. M. 1-2 
 6. Houston C. 0-1 
 7. Phoenix M. 0-3 


Connecticut releases Chamber, couple of changes in San Antionio -by Eurobasket News
Connecticut Sun thanked to guard Cori Chambers (5'9''-G-85, agency: LBM Management, college: Georgia), ex player of Russian team Shelen-ETK Krasnoyarsk. Chambers was drafted by Connecticut on WNBA draft 2007 as 26th pick of the second round. But she had only one appearance in WNBA so far. Since she get drafted she has played only 7 games and it happened in Russian Sperleague. As a member of Krasnoyarsk she averaged 11 ppg, 0.6 rpg and 2.6 spg.

San Antonio Silver Stars made couple of changes during the last few days. The team waived center Brittany Wilkins (6'3''-F/C-83, agency: LBM Management, college: Iowa St.), forward Khara Smith (6'2''-F-82, college: De Paul) and guards Joyce Ekworomadu (5'9''-G-86, college: Texas St.-San Marcos) and Alex Anderson (6'1''-G/F, college: Chattanooga).
Brittany Wilkins spent previous season in Australia playing shortly for Adelajde Fellas after what she went to Swiss team Neuchatel. Later, actually in December, she moved to Adelaide Link Lighting. Willkins played 7 games in total for those three teams.
Khara Smith tries to get into San Antionio's roster since summer 2006 but unsuccessfully. Silver Stars drafted her on WNBA draft 2006.
Nigerian guard Joyce Ekworomadu this year graduated on Texas State - San Marcos where she was at starting five. She had very good stats at his last year in NCAA. For 32 games Ekworomadu had 18.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 1.8 apg. She is a member of Nigerian National Team.
As Ekworomadu, Alex Anderson also just came out from NCAA. She graduated on Chattanooga where at the last year she averaged 17.3 ppg and 8.7 rpg. Silver Stares picked Anderson on previous WNBA draft.