EUROBASKET NEWS REPORT - 4/24/2009

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Men News

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  ALGERIA   


Standings
D1 Standings
 1. M.C.Alger 0-0 
 2. Annaba 0-0 
 3. N.B. Staoueli 0-0 
 4. WA Boufarik 0-0 
 5. CRB 0-0 
 6. NAH Dey 0-0 
 7. COBB 0-0 
 8. WA Rouiba 0-0 
 9. ASPTT 0-0 
 10. JSB M'sila 0-0 
 11. WBAin-Benian 0-0 
 12. USMM 0-0 


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  ANTIGUA   


Antigua and St.Kitts Basketball Champions face-off - by Eurobasket
Basketball City will come alive this weekend when the St.Kitts Amateur Basketball Association (SKABA) will be hosting the Champion Basketball team from neighbouring Antigua & Barbuda. The two ti will arrive here on Friday and will engage local club teams in matches on Saturday and Sunday evenings. The visiting basketball team is the Antigua Defense Force Warriors who is the top ranked team in Antigua and the multiple time Antigua Barbuda Basketball Association Division 1 playoff champions. The team features some of Antigua s top and national players including Marlon Charles (186-G-76), Mario Davis (198-F/G-80, college: Missouri Western), Shawn Williams, Kelvin Simon and Vivian Destin.
On Saturday The Warriors will engage an all star team from the Challengers Community League in challengers. The team will then play Defending SKABA national champions Rams Hitters on Sunday as part of the official opening of the 2009 SKABA League.
According to officials of the Antigua team the players are keenly anxious to play their counterparts here on St.Kitts. According to coach Bradbury Browne the Warriors are looking forward to matching their skills against the St.Kitts Champions Hitters. Browne indicated that he was keen on viewing how well his team will match up against the top club in St.Kitts.
I expect an exciting and keenly contested match-up , said Hitters Coach James Hanley . We have been in training for some time now in preparation for the start of the league and the Antiguan Champions will be the perfect team to access our readiness for the 2009 season, Hanley continued.
Hitters this year will feature the basically the same team that won them the national title last year. With the re-acquisition of star forward Anthony Jabal and the pending summer return of Marvin Davis and the almost 7 foot center Jerran Morris Hitters will no doubt have to be considered favorites. However Ghetto Roots has acquired national guard Levi By-By Fyfeild from the McKnight Trotters. Fyfeilds presence is sure to enhance the team and will ensure that Ghetto Roots will once again be Hitters toughest challengers for the 2009 season.
The 2009 season tips off at 5pm on Sunday with the traditional march past and 2 match-ups including 2009 finalist Horsfords Ghetto Roots vs 2007 Champions the St.Pauls Tuff Knots in game 1 and the Antigua Champions the defense force warriors vs SKABA Champions Rams Hitters

Source St Kitts Basketball


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  ARAB CLUB CHAMPIONSHIPS   


A new draw for the 20th ACC - by Mohammed Malas
After the withdrawal of An Nasr (UAE) and Mareekh (SUD), A new draw was taken place in Lebanon for the 20th Arab Clubs Championship which will begin on the 25th of April and resumes until the 6th of May.

The new groups draw is:

- Group A:
Sporting Al Riyadi Beirut (LEB) 'Hosts'
ASPTT Alger (ALG)
Al Nizwa (OMA)
Al Hilal (KSA)
Al Kahraba Electricity (IRQ)

- Group B:
Sagesse - Al Hekmeh Beirut (LEB)
Al Jaysh Army SC (QAT)
ASU Sports Club (JOR)
Ittihad de Tanger (MOR)
Al Arabi Club (KUW)

- Group C:
Zain (JOR) 'Titleholders'
De La Salle Al Quds Jerusalem (PAL)
Al Manama (BHR)
Al Tilal Aden (YEM)

The new games schedule will be announced later today.


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  AUSTRALIA   


Cody Ellis signs with Billikens - by Eurobasket News
Saint Louis University head men's basketball coach Rick Majerus today announced that 6-foot-8 forward Cody Ellis (202-F-90) (Perth, Australia/Lake Ginninderra/Institute of Sport) has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University and play basketball for the Billikens. Ellis will have four years of eligibility beginning with the 2009-10 academic year.

'Cody is certainly a welcome addition to the team, first and foremost because of his character,' Majerus said. 'He is a committed student and someone who appreciates the opportunity that the Australian Institute of Sport has provided him. Cody gives us a dimension we currently do not have - an outside shooting big man who can knock down the 3-pointer, yet can post up with authority and rebound. Cody will be perfect in our NBA set pick and pop plays and will fit well into our motion offense. We expect him to become a go-to-guy, both on the block and outside for the three.'

'Similar to the Lisch family, the bloodline is certainly there,' Majerus said. 'Cody's father, Mike, was a stalwart and a star for the Australian National Team as well as the Perth Wildcats, the premier professional league in Australia. Cody is the son of a coach and plays like one - smart, committed and passionate.

'Cody, and anyone else who plays for the Emus, has been very well coached,' Majerus said. 'Coach Marty Clarke does a superb job of preparing them for the rigors of international ball. I feel that Cody as well as Christian Salecich, who we signed last fall, may both one day play for the Australian National team, the Boomers.

'Cody's passing skills, unselfishness and feel for the game belie his years, having been so well coached by Clarke, as well as by his father, Mike Ellis, who coached the Perth Wildcats in the Australian NBL.' Majerus said. 'We are excited for Cody to come on board with us, and our players are certainly looking forward to playing alongside someone with his commitment and skill set.'

Ellis is ranked as the No. 1 power forward and the No. 3 player overall in the 2009 class in Australia, and recruiting service Scouts, Inc., rates him the No. 76 power forward nationally. He averaged 14 ppg and eight rpg while hitting 42 percent from 3-point range for the Australian Institute of Sport, the elite academy in Canberra, Australia. A.I.S. has produced more than 20 Division I players, including teammate Christian Salecich who signed last fall with the Billikens. The duo led A.I.S. to the 2008 Southeast Australian Basketball League finals. Ellis helped Australia earn a silver medal at the 2007 Oceania Tournament and helped his team win the bronze medal game at the 2008 Albert Schweitzer Tournament in Germany. He was selected to the 2009 Australia U-19 Nationals All-Tournament team, and he will be a member of the Junior National Australia team at the upcoming FIBA World U-19 Championships in New Zealand.

Ellis is the fifth member of the Billikens' recruiting class this season. Last fall, SLU signed 6-5 guard Jeff Reid (Topeka, Kan./Hayden), 6-8 forward Cory Remekun (Mesquite, Texas/Mesquite), 6-4 guard Christian Salecich (Gold Coast, Australia/ Lake Ginninderra/Institute of Sport) and 6-7 forward Jon Smith (Grove City, Ohio/Grove City).

Courtesy of www.slubillikens.cstv.com


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  BELIZE   


Historic and successful visit by FIBA Americas Secretary General !!! - by David Magana
Mr. Alberto Garcia, Secretary General of FIBA Americas, recently concluded a historic and very successful visit to Belize. Mr. Garcia, based in Puerto Rico, visited Belize at the request of the new Executive Committee of the Belize Basketball Federation (BBF). During his visit, critical meetings were held with the Minister of Youth and Sports, Honourable Elvin Penner, the Belize Olympic Committee (BOC) Executive, coaches, referees, players as well as the media to discuss the development of the sport. Mr. Garcia also took a brief tour of basketball facilities in Belize City, reviewed the recently launched Mens Senior National Team Programme and fully endorsed the BBF four-year strategic plan for the development of basketball across the country. The FIBA Americas Secretary General has also proposed the establishment of a tri-partite Technical Cooperation Agreement with the Government, the BOC and FIBA Americas/BBF to symbolise and record the stakeholder commitment required for successful execution of the strategic plan. BBF President, Paul Thompson remarked: This was the first ever visit of such a high level FIBA official to Belize and the BBF is therefore delighted that Mr. Garcia was able to visit at this critical time in the reinvigoration of basketball in Belize. BBF Secretary General, Julian Murillo added: We hope that Mr. Garcias visit and his endorsement of our strategic plan signals to the country that a new dawn is upon us for the sport of basketball. The BBF continues to work with all major stakeholders towards the development of the sport and would like to specifically thank the media for their coverage and accommodation during Mr. Garcias visit to Belize.

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  BOSNIA   


Standings - D2 Leagues
D2 Leagues Standings
A1 League
 1. Celik 21-0 
 2. Triland 18-3 
 3. Vogosca 14-7 
 4. Student T. 12-8 
 5. Play Off 11-10 
 6. Brcko 11-10 
 7. Kakanj 10-11 
 8. Limometal 7-13 
 9. Bihac 7-14 
 10. Lukavac 7-14 
 11. Trica 7-14 
 12. Velpak 0-21 
D1 Srpska Liga
 1. Sutjeska 20-5 
 2. Bratunac 18-7 
 3. Radnik B. 16-9 
 4. Prijedor 16-9 
 5. Varda 14-8 
 6. Gacko 14-8 
 7. Glasinac 10-12 
 8. Wolf Security 7-15 
 9. Bijeljina 7-15 
 10. Rudar 6-16 
 11. Mladost 76 6-16 
 12. Radivoje Kor. 4-18 
Herceg-Bosne
 1. Brotnjo Citluk 17-1 
 2. Capljina 15-3 
 3. Odzak 12-6 
 4. Siroki II 10-8 
 5. Livno 10-8 
 6. Zrinjski II 6-11 
 7. Busovaca 5-12 
 8. Tomislav 5-13 
 9. Ljubuski 4-12 
 10. Rama 2-14 


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  BRAZIL   


Standings - BNL
NBB Standings
 1. Flamengo 20-2 
 2. Universo/BRB 19-4 
 3. Pitagoras/Minas 18-4 
 4. CISER/Araldite 17-6 
 5. Winner/Limeira 14-8 
 6. Vivo/Franca 12-10 
 7. Pinheiros 12-11 
 8. GRSA/Bauru 10-11 
 9. Paulistano 10-12 
 10. Lupo/Araraq. 8-14 
 11. Conti/Assis 7-14 
 12. CETAF 7-16 
 13. Univates/Bira 4-18 
 14. Saldanha 4-18 
 15. S.Jose/Vinac 4-18 


NBB Round: 24 (Regular Season) - by Eurobasket News
Joinville - Vivo/Franca 79-59
Jefferson Sobral (203-F-80) knocked down 19 points and Joinville earned the 17th victory. They defeated Vivo/Franca at home court and stayed in the 4th spot in the ladder. Antwine Williams provided 16 points for the winners. William Drudi had 18 points in the loss.

GRSA/Bauru - S.Jose/Vinac 86-58
GRSA/Bauru cruised past Sao Jose at home court. Larry Taylor (186-G-80, college: Missouri Western) came up with his usual all-around performance tallying 18 points, 8 assists, 7 boards and 4 steals. Maozao Pereira added 12 points for the winners. Di Galvao had 12 points for Sao Jose.

Conti/Assis - Winner/Limeira 63-75
Winner/Limeira celebrated the 14th win in the season as they held off Conti/Assis on the road. Guilherme Teichmann (204-F/C-83, college: Tulsa) and Nezinho dos Santos dropped 16 points each for Winner/Limeira. Bruno Fiorotto had 13 points in the win. Rodrigo Bahia Bispo and Alfredo Perandini answered with 13 points each for Conti/Assis.

Flamengo - Saldanha 99-49
Flamengo dismantles visiting Saldanha to improve at 20-2 record. Marcelinho Machado (199-F/G-75, agency: Interperformances) stepped up with 25 points, 8 boards and 7 assists for Flamengo. Baby Araujo had 22 points and 8 boards in the winning effort. Gustavo and Willian da Silva topscored with 12 points each for Saldanha.

Pitagoras/Minas - CETAF 101-70
Pitagoras/Minas toppled CETAF behind 21 points from Murilo da Rosa (208-C-83, agency: Arik Krayn Services). Ricardo Probst added 18 points, while Evandro Soro and Luiz Felipe Campos contributed 15 points apiece in the victory. Amiel Morejon and Guilherme Schneider posted 14 points each for CETAF.

Univates/Bira - Lupo/Araraq. 75-80
Arlindo Neto (188-G-86) scored 18 points to propel Lupo/Araraquara to a road win over Univates/Bira. Andre Bambu and Luisinho da Silva had 13 points each as Lupo claimed the 8th win in the tournament. Univates/Bira suffered the 8th straight loss despite 16 points from Leandro Buboltz.

Pinheiros - Universo/BRB 76-78
Universo/BRB grabbed a difficult road win over Pinheiros to remain at the second spot in the standings. Alexandre Garcia (191-G-80, agency: Interperformances) nailed 18 points to pace the visitors. Estevam Ferreira and Diego Pinheiro provided 13 points each for Universo/BRB. Marquinhos Vinicius responded with 19 points, 6 assists and 6 boards for Pinheiros.


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  BULGARIA   


NBL Round: 25 (Regular Season) - by Eurobasket News
Sliven - Spartak P. 72-104
Spartak cruised past the last ranked Sliven 104-72 jumping to 12-10 record. Sasa Topchov (206-C-80) and Tsvetoslav Ostrev combined 35 points in the winning squad. Petroslav Zafirov had double-double in loss, 26 pts and 10 boards.

Lukoil A. - Yambol 89-81
The reigning champ was better than Yambol remaining on top of NBL with 18-3 record. Riste Stefanov (198-G-83, agency: Interperformances) came up with 23, while Willie Deane delivered one point less. Stanislav Govedarov shined in loss with 25 pts and 7 boards.

ChernoMore - Levski 58-84
Levski clinched second place in the Bulgarian National Basketball League (NBL) Regular season after a blowout 58-84 away victory over the only team that had any chance of catching them - Euroins Cherno More. In fact, the game was much more important for the hosts, who weren't looking at the second place, but rather the third. Despite this latest setback, the men from Varna still have the chance of getting that and avoiding a playoff clash with champions Lukoil Academic before the finals. *More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Valentin Anguelov


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  COLOMBIA   


Jorge Canedo champion of the USCAA Basketball with Talladega College - by Victor Garcia
The Colombian center Jorge Canedo Martinez (611 C) won the USCAA (United States Collegiate Athletics Asociation) with the Talladega College Basketball team called Tornadoes.
The team defeated Rochester College in the final game 45 - 31.
Canedo played all 24 games with the team averaging a career low 2 PPG, 3 RPG..
Canedo arrive to Talladega after leave Georgia College, and it also was its first Championship in the USA.
Talladega University is also member of the NAIA.


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  CROATIA   


A1, Round 8 (Elimination Round): Wins for Zagreb, Zadar, Cibona and Sibenka - by Eurobasket News

Group 1-8
Sibenka - Dubrovnik 104-99
Sibenka grabbed the second win in the second stage mostly owing to Ivan Mimica (193-G-80), who nailed 31 points. Mario Filipovic and Filip Vikicevic followed him netting 19 pts apiece. On the other side, Mario Lucic and Dejon Prejean combined 43 pts in defeat. Sibenka 2-6, Dubrovnik 3-4.

KK Split - Cibona 65-73
Cibona cruised past Split on the road for 6-1 record (same as Zadar). Alan Anderson (198-G/F-82, college: Michigan St.) again shined for the winners collecting 18 points and 7 rebounds. Davor Kus and Jared Homan helped with 14 pts each. Darlon Johnson responded with 25 pts and 7 rebs for Split (4-4).

Svjetlost - Zadar 73-85
Damir Rancic (197-G-83) was on fire for the reigning champion scoring 26 points (6 triples). The team of Zmago Sagadin jumped to almost perfect 6-1 record. Svjetlost got 17 pts, 5 rebounds and 8 assists from Domagoj Norac, falling to 0-8.

KK Zagreb - Cedevita 97-81
Zagreb was too strong fro Cedevita in local derby remaining the only undefeated team after 7 rounds. Adriatic league MVP Ante Tomic (215-C-87) again stepped up for his team nailing 22 points, with just 3 misses shots. Ramel Bradley and Ivan Novacic combined 37 pts in defeat. Cedevita 2-6.


Group 9-14
Kvarner NR - Zabok 64-55
The team from Rijeka grabbed this one getting 19 points from Fran Pilepic (192-G-89). David Grbesic also shined netting 14 pts and pulling down 5 boards. Zabok got the most from Ive Ivanov, 17 pts and 9 rebs.

Trogir - Alkar Sinj 79-70
Trogir outplayed Alkar at home mostly owing to Toni Bizaca (202-F-82), who drained 19 points. Ivan Cirko and Franjo Bubalo also had pretty important role netting 13 pts each. Slavko Modric and Josip Blajic had 38 pts for the guests.

Borik - Dubrava 71-62
Miro Dundov (194-G-75) stepped up for Borik netting 18, Mate Mrva had 12, while Marko Zorz helped with 11 points and 6 rebounds. Petar Cosic answered with 18 pts in the loosing squad, while Igor Matic contributed in this defeat with double-double, 12 pts and 10 rebounds.


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  D-LEAGUE   


Colorado takes 1-0 lead in the big final - by Eurobasket News
Colorado - Utah 136-131
Colorado grabbed the first win in D-League final outlaying Utah Flash last night on the road 136-131. The winners had couple of players in a game mood. Sonny Weems (6'6''-G/F-86, college: Arkansas) was the leading scorer with 28, Billy Thomas had 27 and Josh Davis nailed two points less. The hosts got 37 points and 6 boards from Ronald DuPree. Game No.2 is scheduled for tomorrow, when 14ers will be the hosts.


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  DOMINICAN REPUBLIC   


Play-off final: CPN ties the score to 1-1 - by Eurobasket News
Final, game 2: GUG - CPN 70-72

CPN survived in the second game of the big final. As a reminder, in game number one GUG grabbed 88-87 road win for 1-0. This time CPN celebrated as a guest also in very exciting game, 72-70. Samuel Mejia (198-G-83, college: De Paul) led the scorers in victory with 18 points. Victor Liz (205-C-78) was behind him with 15, while Luis Martinez (196-F-84, college: William Pater.) collected 13 pts and 6 rebounds. Victor Ortega was the last player with double-digits in scoring for CPN - 11 pts. Luis Felipe Lopez responded with 19 pts and 6 rebs in the loosing squad. Benjamin Colon (201-F-84, college: Florida CCJ) and Eric Ferguson (186-G-82, agency: Strategic Sports, college: Arkansas) contributed with 13 points apiece. CPN did a good job in the first half taking 7-point lead, 26-33. GUG improved after that seriously threatening to reach the second win in this final, but fortunately to CPN that didn't happen. Both teams had almost the same shot percentage and interesting is that GUG finished this game with 5 rebounds more. Third match will be played tomorrow. As it was in the first one, CPN will once again be the host. Next games are scheduled for April 26 and after than April 29 if necessary.

GUG: Luis Felipe Lopez 19+6 boards, Benjamin Colon 13+9 boards, Eric Ferguson 13
CPN: Samuel Mejia 18, Victor Liz 15, Luis Martinez 13+6 boards, Victor Ortega 11


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  EBA   


Stats Leaders
EBA Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 Harper, Hampton 32.0
2 Frazier, Harrisb 28.8
3 Holland, Hampton 26.8
4 Thompson, Cinc 26.3
5 Murphy, NJ 24.0
Rebounds Per Game
1 Mosby, NY 18.0
2 Jones, Garden 12.0
3 Cox, NY 11.8
4 Frazier, Harrisb. 10.9
5 Lawley, Elmira 9.8
Assists Per Game
1 Pursoo, NY 9.1
2 Godette, Garden 7.3
3 Hart, DE 7.0
4 Johnson, Hampton 6.0
5 Scott, Elmira 4.9


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  ESTONIA   


KML play-off: Valga humiliates Kalev in game 1 - by Janar Filippov
In the first game of quarter-final series, KK Valga allowed Tallinna Kalev make only 27% of FG and achieved a firm 56:45 victory. Valga ended the first half with a 7:0 run and took the lead 29:23. At the end of the 3rd quarter, the Valga made another huge run (9:0) and led by 14, already (46:32). But Kalev started the 4th quarter with a 9:0 and closed the gap to a mere 5 points (46:41) with 5 minutes left. The rest of the game belonged to the hosts, though. Antti Vasar (195-F-79) and Heiko Rannula (186-G-83) made the decisive baskets to keep the guests in a safe distance and Valga took a 1:0 lead in the best-of-five series.
Rannula scored 15, Vasar 14+5as, Reinar Hallik (208-C-84) 12+11rb+3bs, Richard Anderson (199-F-77, agency: Rasmussen Services, college: Simon Fraser) 11+10rb. Veljo Vares (200-F/G-81) had 19 for Kalev.


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  EUROLEAGUE   


Partizan's Velickovic takes Rising Star Trophy - by Eurobasket
A fun-to-watch forward who brought his team close to the Final Four for a second consecutive year, Novica Velickovic (205-F-86) of Partizan Belgrade, has been rewarded with the 2009 Euroleague Rising Star Trophy in a vote of the competition's head coaches. Velickovic, 22, exploded in his fourth Euroleague season, becoming not only Partizan's newest go-to scorer, but one of the competitions most decisive players in the crucial Top 16 round. Indeed, Velickovic won the MVP award for February, the only month exclusively devoted to the Top 16, while leading Partizan into the playoffs. He finished the season as Partizan's top scorer, with 11.5 points per game, and it's second best rebounder, with 5.1 on average. Velickovic was also among his team's best three players in steals, assists and blocks. Velickovic also ranked among the Euroleague's best 25 players of the season in both scoring and rebounds. Most of all, Velickovic proved to be a team leader despite his age at the most crucial juncture of the season, averaging 14.5 points and 6.7 rebounds in Partizan's four victories during the Top 16. Led by Velickovic, the young Partizan team generated such a following in Belgrade that the team broke the all-time attendance record for European club competitions by attracting 22,567 fans to its last Top 16 home game. For his unique combination of talent and leadership skills, the Euroleague head coaches have tabbed Velickovic as the rising star of the competition this season.

The five-year old Rising Star Trophy recognizes the best Euroleague player who was younger than 22 on July 1 of the summer before the season started. In one of the closest votes ever, Regal FC Barcelona forward Ersan Ilyasova (207-F-87) and Real Madrid point guard Sergio Llull (178-G-87) tied for second place, right behind Velickovic. Further back in third place was his Partizan teammate, swingman Milenko Tepic (198-G-87, agency: Beo Basket). Fifth place was tied between Emir Preldzic (206-F-87, agency: Beo Basket) of Fenerbahce and yet another Partizan youngster, forward Jan Vesely (211-F-90). The Rising Star Trophy is among several end-of-season honors awarded by Euroleague Basketball. Already announced have been the Alphonso Ford Top Scorer Trophy, which was won by Igor Rakocevic (191-G-78) of Tau Ceramica, and the Best Defender Trophy, which went to Dimitris Diamantidis (196-G-80) of Panathinaikos for a fifth straight year. Still to be announced are the nominees for the All-Euroleague team. The All-Euroleague first and second teams, plus the Euroleague MVP, will be revealed at the Euroleague Basketball Awards Ceremony on May 2 during the Final Four in Berlin. The Aleksander Gomelskiy Coach of the Year Trophy and the Euroleague Club Executive of the Year are post-season awards.

A year ago, Velickovic had already established himself as a key to Partizan's first playoffs appearance of the decade. This season, he returned as a team leader to repeat that accomplishment, leading a young team whose competitive spirit attracted massive attention in Belgrade and beyond. Velickovic shined from the very beginning of the season, showing himself to be a new leader for head coach Dusko Vujosevic as Partizan upset Real Madrid in its Euroleague home opener. Velickovic would score in double digits in six of the first seven regular season games to put Partizan in position to reach the Top 16. In the next round, he started even stronger, with 19 points and 10 rebounds - his fifth career double-double - as Partizan topped regular season group winner Lottomatica Roma and Velickovic earned the Top 16 Week 2 MVP honor. That lit the fuse for four consecutive victories with which Partizan locked up an early playoff spot. By pacing the team in scoring, rebounds, steals and index rating for the month, Velickovic proved the driving force in Partizan's playoff run and, as such, was Euroleague Basketball's choice as MVP for February. Later, in his team's final Euroleague game of the season, Velickovic re-confirmed his potential with 26 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists in Game 3 of the best-of-five playoffs against defending champion CSKA.

Velickovic is the fifth winner of the Rising Star Trophy. Last season the award went to Danilo Gallinari (205-G/F-88, agency: Players Group) of AJ Milano. Rudy Fernandez (197-G-85) of DKV Joventut won it in 2007. The 2006 trophy was awarded to Andrea Bargnani (209-F/C-85) of Benetton Treviso while in 2005 the winner was Erazem Lorbek (210-F/C-84, college: Michigan St.) of Climamio Bologna.

Courtesy of Euroleague


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  FINLAND   


Korisliiga Round: 3 (Quarter-Finals) - by Eurobasket News
Honka - KTP 75-62
Honka celebrated the third straight win over KTP and paved their way into the semis. Ben Perkins (200-F-79, college: Mc Neese St.) came off the bench to topscore for Honka with 18 points. Tuukka Kotti provided 17 points and 10 rebounds for the winners. Ville Makalainen responded with 21 points and 8 rebounds in defeat.

Namika Lahti - Korihait 86-77
Namika Lahti escaped elimination beating Korihait at home court. Kurtis Rice (198-F-82, agency: Court Side, college: Charleston So.) provided 20 points, while Ray Nixon added 17 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists as Lahti forced the fourth game in the series. Mark Zoller fired 22 points and grabbed 6 boards for Korihait.

Kataja - ToPo 79-76
Kataja held off ToPo to make it to the semifinal. Larry Blair (183-G-84, college: Liberty) was unstoppable as he poured in 31 points for the winners. Jeremiah Wood added 20 points and 14 boards for Kataja. Jean Francois responded with 15 points and 6 boards for ToPo.

Kouvot - Pyrinto 67-84
Pyrinto came up with the biggest surprise at this stage as they swept the series against Kouvot. Damon Williams (199-F-73, college: Colorado St.-Pueblo) had 21 points, 14 boards and 5 assists to pace Pyrinto to the win. Chris Hester added 19 points for the visitors. Matt Williams managed 22 points for Kouvot in the loss.


KORISLIIGA: Difference again 12 pts - by Rauno Hurmalainen

There will be a third contest between Team Componenta (Karkkila) and Vilpas (Salo) before it's clear which team is going to play on top level (Korisliiga) next 2009-10 season. Vilpas won on Tuesday at Karkkila by 12 pts (67-79) and Team Componenta won tonight in Salo by 12 pts 53-65 (22-28). TC won all four quarters: 11-13, 11-15, 15-20, 16-17. The third game will be coming Saturday, April 25 in Karkkila. Tonight the MVP was Frank Richards (188-G-82, college: Kansas St.) (TC), who scored game high 31 pts and grabbed nine rbs. 38-year-old Martti Kuisma (205-C/F-70, college: Florida) added 15 pts. Quennell Green (198-G/F-84, college: SE Louisiana) led Vilpas with 14 pts. Aubrey Conerly (183-G-83, college: Jacksonville) added 13 pts. 1340 spectators saw Vilpas scoring season fewest pts (53) and hitting treys 17,6% (6/34).

FoKoPo (Forssa) has nominated Team executive manager and assistant coach Ari Mikkola to be FoKoPo's new Head Coach. Thecontract is model 1+2 years.

BC Jyvaskyla (I-division) has called Jari Laine to act as Team's new Head Coach 2009-10. Mike King will be Team's new assistant coach.



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  FYR MACEDONIA   


AMAK SP and Pelister grab 1-0 lead in the quarterfinals - by Eurobasket News
First games of Superleague quarterfinals were played yesterday.

AMAK SP was better than MZT Skopje at home 75-64. The teams were leveled during the first ten minutes, but after that the team from Ohrid improved setting the score to 40-35 at the half time. The hosts controlled rhythm of the game until the end keeping Pelister on the safe distance. Jarrid Frye (190-G-85, agency: Liman Sports, college: Sacred Heart) was a key player in this victory collecting 18 points and 7 rebounds. Mladen Gambiroza (206-C-75) had 13 and Eftim Bogoev helped with 12 pts. On the other side, MZT got 12 points and 8 rebounds from Pero Blazevski.

Swisslion Pelister blasted Ovce Pole in Bitola 89-71. Zoran Petkovski (188-G-78) was on fire for the hosts scoring 31 points. Giorgi Talevski (203-F-76) also had important role delivering 20 pts and pulling down 10 boards. Nebojsa Ristic (194-G/F-77) responded with 26 pts and 8 rebounds in the loosing squad. Pelister did a great job in the first half of this game making plus 13. Ovce Pole was not able seriously to treat after that.

Second game of the play-off quarterfinals are scheduled for April 25. As a reminder, No.1 Feni Industri and No.2 Fersped Rabotnicki will join in the semis.


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  GERMANY   


The Deutsche Bank Skyliners Face Off Against Alba Berlin And Titus Ivory Battles Immanuel Mcelroy For Smiling Bragging Rights April 26th - by Miles Schmidt-Scheuber
With temperatures of 24C expected, the Ballsporthalle room temperature could resemble a Mcdonalds kitchen, and some Deutsche Bank Skyliners might be craving a banana split ice cream as a reward if they can take the underdog role to new heights with a victory against Alba Berlin. With 40 minutes of hard basketball still ahead for Frankfurt, some players were very quick with their sweet desires. 'I would want a Haagen Dazs Pistacchio', said Skyliner forward Ilian Evtimov (201-F-83, agency: Interperformances, college: N.Carolina St.). 'I would prefer a carmel swirl', added Skyliner American Keith Simmons (196-G-85, college: Holy Cross). Skyliner chef Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ) might like to eat the Turkish Doenner 3-4 times a week, but he knows how to finish off a good meal. 'Ice cream is always nice. With a win against Alba Berlin, I would like my ice cream with a chocolate topping', jested Murat Didin. Frankfurt wants to take the underdog role to new heights the same way that The Chicago Bulls and Dallas Mavericks want to in the NBA playoffs. Ilian Evtimov couldnt really decide what was more difficult, a win for Frankfurt against 8 time BBl champ Alba Berlin or Chicago and Dallas advancing to the next round.' In terms of our game, sometimes an underdog has the advantage, because all the pressure is on the favorite. This will be like a playoff game, because both teams need to win. We have a lot of respect for Berlin and will prepare well,' stressed Ilian Evtimov.

The Deutsche Bank Skyliners also have to slowly get used to the possibly of keeping this underdog role in the playoffs and having to win on the road. Frankfurt could do themselves a favour by finishing the season 2-0 with big wins against Berlin and Quackenbruck and give the team some special impulse heading into the post season. 'This would really give us some momentum if we can beat two strong teams', said Ilian Evtimov. Coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ) was smiling more than usual during the press conference Thursday and was just in good spirits concerning the play of his team in the last weeks. 'We have a good curve since the Braunschweig win. However we have to upgrade it a bit towards the playoffs. Berlin will be a good test and it will be a good feeling out as we might meet them in the playoffs', warned Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ). But one thing that Frankfurt wants to avoid is meeting Berlin in the quarterfinals. 'We dont want a great boxer in the quarterfinals, but rather a warm up boxer', joked Skyliner coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ).

The Albatros bird has been described as a legendary bird and has similarities to Alba Berlin in that the team also has legendary status in the BBL winning from 1997-2003. It seems like the team is heading back towards dynasty status after winning the 2008 BBL and 2009 cup title. 'I am sure that is their goal. It takes a lot of effort to build a team that is so competitive. They have a great team and a very strong starting five. I think that they have the potential to make a new dynasty', stressed Skyliner forward Ilian Evtimov. Alba Berlin is not only feared on the court, but the myth says that sailors also feared to hurt the Albatros bird since it was believed to be disastrous to shoot or harm the Albatros. However sailors regularly killed and ate the bird, but they are regarded as the souls of lost sailors. Frankfurt might want to be careful how to damage the opponent without getting in trouble with the myth. 'I know that we all have to protect animals, but as a tradition most Basketball teams are symbolized by an animal. We can continue to show our good feelings in nature, but on the court respect them as our opponent', joked Skyliner coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ).

Another likeness between Alba Berlin and the Albatros is that the team is regarded as the best German Basketball team and the Albatros is among the largest of flying birds and has the largest wing span. Frankfurt will need to find a way to stop the flight of the Albatros in the direction of the basket. 'If you dont defend the paint, then you wont be successful. This is one of the very important things in Basketball that you cant change', expressed Skyliner coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ). The Albatros is also highly efficient in the air using dynamic soaring to cover great distances with little exertion. Alba Berlin has much success on the court, because they can cover great length on the court due to a deep bench. 'We have understood day by day how important energy is from the bench. We need to take that energy into the Berlin game', said Skyliner coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ).

The game will also mark a new head to head battle between 2006 Cologne champions Titus Ivory (193-G-79, college: Penn St.) and Immanuel McElroy (193-G-80, college: Cincinnati). Both have experience of winning titles and there is a good chance that one of them will be hosting another title in June 2009. They share six titles among each other. Mcelroy is one of the most complete players. He is unselfish and scores when he needs to. He touches every portion of the game', reflected Skyliner guard Titus Ivory. Ivory cherishes one memory from 2006 the most with Mcelroy. 'I will never forget his game winning shot in game four of the 2006 playoffs in Berlin', said Titus Ivory. Mcelroy also receives much respect from the Skyliner players who only had positive things to say. 'He is a smart player, good athlete, can penetrate and is one of the better players I have played against', said Skyliner forward Ilian Evtimov.

Skyliner American Keith Simmons named Mcelroy as one of the most important guys that Frankfurt has to shut down. 'He is a catalyst for the team and plays very hard. He can be the X-factor for the team, because he can do so many different things', stated Skyliner Keith Simmons. With the continued strong play of Mcelroy, he will surely be a high sought after player in leagues like Spain and Italy. If Mcelroy leaves Berlin, then a player like Keith Simmons could surely take Mcelroys place. It will not be easy to hold Simmons in Frankfurt. 'Berlin has a great program, but so does Frankfurt. It would be a very tough decision. I will have to wait until the season is over to think about my future', warned Skyliner Keith Simmons. Mcelroy is even respected by the top players in Europe. 'He is an athletic all rounder with a winner mentality, stated Demond Mallet (186-G-78, agency: Higher Vision Sports, college: Mc Neese St.) There also seem to be no clear winners in the smile contest between Titus Ivory, Michael Hakim Jordan and Immanuel McElroy. 'I dont know how much he has been smiling in Berlin, but we smiled a lot together in Cologne. It is a tie when we three are together', stressed Titus Ivory. According to Demond Mallet, the smile talent comes with the territory. 'There are no winners. It is a tie, because both come from the south', joked American Demond Mallet

The Deutsche Bank Skyliners have not the fondest memories of Alba Berlin in the last years having a record of two wins and seven loses. The two wins that they recorded were games where absolutely everything worked for Frankfurt. Who could forget the debut of ex Skyliner coach Charles Barton who entered the Ballsporthalle in January 2006 and led his new team to a 81-67 win. Last season, Frankfurt took apart at home Berlin 74-58 getting 19 points and six rebounds from Derick Allen. Frankfurt lost all four games the last three years in the old Max Schmeling arena. In the season 2005-2006, Frankfurt was pounded 111-81. The season 2006-2007 was a disaster as Frankfurt was crushed 83-49 in a cup game and 92-75 in a regular season game. Last season despite a double double (21p, 10r) from Derrick Allen (203-F-80, agency: Pro One Sports, college: Mississippi), Frankfurt was unable to get past Alba Berlin 74-64. The last two victories in Berlin were recorded in the 2005 playoffs as Frankfurt surprisingly won two on the road. ' That was really a very nice memory winning those two games. It is great living with these memories and knowing what you have done in past and what you can do now, but it is important now that we live and win in the present with a good performance on Sunday', stressed Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ). This season, Frankfurt was stopped in the O2 arena 87-71 after a disastrous first quarter getting down 31-12. They couldnt seek revenge in the cup semi final either losing 81-69.

Eight time BBL champ Alba Berlin went into the 2008-2009 season as the huge favourite to win the BBL title and have been near the top for the whole season. Many experts have been debating if this roster is the best Berlin team ever, which is difficult to rate since there were many fine teams in the 1997-2003 non stop title run. However Berlin management have made it clear, that they dont only want to keep a high profile name in German Basketball, but make the jump to the best teams in Europe. In order for that to be realistic, management went all out and signed many high profile players making Alba Berlin a Dream Team and solidifying them as the Bayern Munich of Basketball in Germany. The mastermind is coach Luka Pavicevic (agency: Beo Basket ), who was already a Basketball legend by the age of 23 in his native Yugoslavia as he won the Euroleague three times with Jugoplastika Split with many notable players like ex Chicago Bull Toni Kucoc. He didnt have an easy time in his first season as coach in the historic capital of Germany, but he fought against the criticism and led his team to their first title after a five year dry spell of not bringing the title home to the Spree. His colleagues around the league have deep respect for the skipper, who already acted like a coach on the floor as a player, who controlled absolutely everything. 'I know him well. He was a great player and really knows the game of Basketball. He is the master of the pick and roll', added Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ).

This season, Luka Pavicevic (agency: Beo Basket ) has a deeper roster, but the expectations are higher. He had the tough Euroleague schedule, plus the unexpected problems that can arrive, when a team is playing in a multi functional Arena, where scheduling has kept the team off guard with games being postponed and being rescheduled. The team also went through a short phase having four players injuried, which didnt help the teams chances in a loss in Dusseldorf. Despite all this stress, the team has been very solid in 2009 registering a 14-4 record. Despite the Euroleague strain, the team was able to land a seven game winning streak. As the Euroleague season ended, the team fell into a small cavity losing two of three games. 'That is a typical sequence with teams coming from the Euroleague back to their own leagues. They often fall into a hole', stated Artland Dragon assistant coach Ralf Rehberger . They seem to have recovered winning their last three games. Currently they are in second place with three games remaining, but with a little luck could secure #1 place with a win at home against Oldenburg in the last game. Even though Berlin is so deep, the playoffs are a new season and this season is as wide open as ever. 'I think that every team has a chance. I think it is great for the future of German Basketball when the spectator doesnt know that the winner could only be one of two teams. All teams are competitive and can win', warned Skyliner coach Murat Didin (agency: Interperformances ).

Alba Berlin is led by American Julius Jenkins (187-G-81, agency: Pro One Sports, college: Georgia Southern), who was the 2008 BBL MVP, is averaging 14,6ppg, 1,8rpg and 4,2apg(4th best in BBL). He is without doubt one of the best players in the BBL and has really profited from the strong offense getting his assist total up. .'Well I think my secret to my increase in assists are our great post players. Nadjfeji gets me a lot of assists and my reading of the defenses has helped me pass better', commented Julius Jenkins. He has scored in double figures 17 times this season. Ex NBA player Ansu Sesay (206-C/F-76, college: Mississippi), who was drafted in 1998 by the Dallas Mavericks and played 127 NBA games. He is averaging 10,6 ppg, and 4,3rpg and is the complete package. He is not only dangerous in the paint, but has a nasty outside shot. He has scored in double figures 19 times.

American two time BBl Allstar Immanuel McElroy is averaging !0,5ppg, 4,9 rpg and 3,4apg. He is a quick dangerous player, who is very versatile being able to play the 1-3 positions. He is the Berlin version of Titus Ivory, when it comes to the winning mentality. He won two BBL cups in Cologne and two BBL titles. He is a player any coach would die to have on their team. He has scored in double figures twenty times including two double doubles. American Casey Jacobsen (198-G/F-81, agency: Octagon, college: Stanford) is averaging 10,2ppg, 2,8rpg and 1,3 apg. He was drafted 2002 by the Phoenix Suns and played 293 games in the NBA. He won a title 2007 with Bamberg, where he was the central figure in the offense. Now with Berlin, he shares a parallel with Skyliner Derrick Allen as both used to be go to guys in the BBL, but now are not the number one scoring option, but very important pieces to their respective teams. He has scored in double figures 15 times.

Serb Aleksandar Nadjfeji (203-F-76) is averaging 9,9ppg, 3,1rpg and 1,7 apg. He belongs to the top power forwards in the BBL and is one of the most dangerous passing forwards in the league. He is always playing at 100% and can really hurt the opponent in the paint. He has made the impression that he wants to stay in Berlin for the long term. He has scored in double figures 13 times. 26 year old Blagota Sekulic (209-F/C-82, agency: FCM) is averaging 9,8ppg, and 4,7rpg. He has really filled the hole down low by injured Patrick Femmerling with consistent power punch. He has a lot of experience having played for various teams in Greece and in Spain for Real Madrid. American Rashad Wright (189-G-82, agency: Pro One Sports, college: Georgia) who was drafted by the Indiana Pacers in 2004 and played five NBA games for the Toronto Rapters is averaging 7,8 ppg, 3,2 rpg and 2,3apg. He had a slow start this season, but has found his rhythm. He is a very dangerous shooter and strong playmaker. American Adam Chubb (207-F/C-81, college: Pennsylvania), who has called his home Germany the last years having played in Giessen, Bremerhaven and in Quakenbruck is averaging 7,0ppg, and 3,4 rpg. He had a very strong season last year with the Artland Dragons averaging 14,7ppg and 5,2 rpg in the ULEB Cup, but has not found his dominating form from last season. He can be a very dangerous finisher in the paint.

Who would ever have thought that German National player Steffen Hamann (194-G-81) would depart Bamberg, but it was clear that without Dirk Bauermann as coach that he might go elsewhere. The five time BBL Allstar and two time BBL champ with Bamberg(2005 & 2007) is averaging 6,5ppg, 1,8rpg and 1,8apg. He is getting less playing time than in Bamberg, since he is sharing the point guard duties with Wright. Ex German National player Patrick Femmerling who is the current German record holder of 13 titles is averaging 3,6ppg and 1,6rpg and his long term injury had hurt Berlin under the boards, but since the arrival of Sekulic, Berlin has filled this gap. German National player Johannes Herber (197-G-83, agency: Pro One Sports, college: W.Virginia), who was injured for more than a year is averaging 2,3ppg. He is a player, who can really help Berlin from the bench, but needs to get back into game rhythm. Serb Dragan Dojcin (204-F-76, agency: Beo Basket) is averaging 3,2ppg and 1,9rpg and is a solid forward, who can give support under the hoops. He recently showed his passing qualities getting five assists against Gottingen. German National player Philip Zwiener (198-F-85, agency: Court Side) is averaging 3,0ppg and 1,0apg and unfortunately cant develop much game experience in an average of 6,44 minutes per game. However the daily training with his teammates is where he can further make progress with his Basketball skills.

The Deutsche Bnak Skyliners have won the triple three times this season disposing of Nordlingen, Braunschweig and Dusseldorf three times, but want to hinder losing three times against Alba Berlin. Frankfurt has two mini advantages against Alba Berlin having won last season in the Ballsporthalle and playing at home. The team knows that they will need to not only give a great team effort, but just do very many things right. 'Every single player can hurt you from Berlin. We will have to play great team defense, rotate fast and box out. We have to cover the whole court and play transition basketball. It seems when we did that and got easy baskets that we were able to win games', stressed Skyliner guard Keith Simmons. As always Alba Berlin has to face the fact that they are the hunted and need to combat the adversary with strong Basketball.' We have to stay focused for the whole 40 minutes', warned Berlin center Adam Chubb. It is also too late in the season for Berlin to jump up and down for joy as if they had just won the lottery about the miserable 2-11 Frankfurt record against playoff teams. 'I dont think anyone underestimates anyone come playoff time', stressed Adam Chubb. Frankfurt should be able to dominate the boards, but have to find a way to defend the sharp shooters and give an almost flawless effort on defense. 'Their pick and role hurt us this season and we will have to contain that. We cant let them get a big lead or run, because it is difficult to come back against Berlin. If we stay in control, then we will have good odds of winning', said Ilian Evtimov. The Deutsche Bank Skyliners host Alba Berlin April 26th at 17:30.


Adam Chubb(Alba Berlin) Interview And Pregame Thoughts To Deutsche Bank Skyliners Game April 26th - by Miles Schmidt-Scheuber

27 year old Adam Chubb (207-F/C-81, college: Pennsylvania) is a 207cm power forward/center from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He played at Pennsylvania from 2000-2004. In his senior year, he averaged in 27 games: 10.5ppg, 7.5rpg, 1.9apg. He started his professional Basketball career at Ulsan Phoebus (South Korea-KBL) and averaged in 46 games 18.7ppg 9.7rpg 1.9apg 56.0%2p. He then headed to Germany for the 2005-2006 season and played for the Giessen 46ers and averaged in 18 games: 9.6ppg, 4.7rpg, 2FGP: 62.0%, FT: 62.0%. In the 2006-2007 season, he headed north and played for the Eisbaren Bremerhaven and averaged in 39 games: 12.2ppg, 7.0rpg, 2FGP: 55.6%, FT: 70.4%. Last season, he won the BBL cup with the Artland Dragons and averaged in 38 games: 13.6ppg, 4.6rpg, 2FGP: 57.7%, FT: 70.7%. He also played 13 ULEB Cup games averaging 14.7ppg, 5.2rpg, 2FGP: 61.1%. This season, he is playing for eight time BBL champion Alba Berlin and is averaging 7,2ppg and 3,4rpg. He won his second BBL Cup with Berlin a few months ago in Hamburg.



Adam, this is your first season with Alba Berlin. You have experienced so many great things in the last eight months. But what has been the best experience that you have had with Alba Berlin?



GOING TO THE TOP 16 AND WINNING THE GERMAN CUP




You played 16 games in the Euroleague this season for Alba Berlin. What was your most memorable game and why?




ROMA AT HOME, BECAUSE I FELT THAT EVERYONE COUNTED US OUT AND IN OUR FIRST GAME WE SHOWED THAT WE WERE GOING TO MAKE SOME NOISE.




What is the most difficult thing that you had to adjust to in the Euroleague that isnt as tough in the BBL games?





AT THAT LEVEL EVERY PLAYER IS AN ALLSTAR






Currently Alba Berlin is in second place. What have been the main reasons why you have not been at the top of the BBL standings the last months? Was the Euroleague schedule a big factor?






NO, WE JUST LOST FOCUS A COUPLE OF GAMES.




The next game is against the 40 minutes of hell MEG Gottingen. You beat them in the tough Lokhalle this season. Surprisingly, the team has not run out of gas yet and kept playing well winning on a consistent level without point guard Kyle Bailey. What will be the key to victory for Alba Berlin?





MATCHING THEIR INTENSITY.







How much of an adjustment has it been for you this season playing in a team that is so deep? In the last years, you played for teams where you had a bigger role on offense.




IT HAS BEEN AN ADJUSTMENT, BUT I KNEW MY ROLE BEFORE I CAME AND I WAS OK WITH IT.









In the last eight games, you have played under twenty minutes. Has your role changed much since the arrival of Blagota Sekulic?







NO, JUST PLAYING LESS MINS.







You played for coaches like Saurunas Sakalauskas and Chris Fleming and now your playing for Luca Pavicvic. What has been the most difficult thing for you that you had to get adjusted to playing for him?







GETTING USED TO A DIFFERENT SYSTEM.





You won the BBL cup for the second straight year. The circumstances were a bit different this time, because everybody expects Berlin to win. Was this cup win as sweet as the win with The Artland Dragons?






THE CUP IS A ONE AND DONE COMPETITION SO BOTH WERE SWEET.






This weekend you face off against The Deutsche Bank Skyliners. You are looking for the third straight win this season against Frankfurt. Frankfurt will be out for revenge. What will be most important for getting a win against Frankfurt?





STAYING FOCUSED FOR THE FULL 40 MINS







Skyliner center Lorenzo Gordon had a big game 30 points and 11 rebounds in Berlin. How will you want to stop him this time?






WE WILL GIVE HIM 30 AND 11 AGAIN AS LONG AS WE WIN.








What is it like playing against Lorenzo Gordon?






ITS TOUGH WITH HIS SIZE. ITS KIND OF LIKE PLAYING AGAINST JEFF GIBBS






Frankfurt is 2-11 against Playoff teams this season. Could that make them dangerous in the playoffs since teams may indirectly underestimate the club?






I DONT THINK ANYONE UNDERESTIMATES ANYONE COME PLAYOFF TIME.






You played against Julius Jenkins the last three years and now he is your teammate. What is it like playing with the 2008 BBL MVP and what is the most important thing that you have learned from him playing with him?





IT IS GREAT TO PLAY WITH HIM. HE ALWAYS PLAYS HARD AND IS UNSELFISH. THAT IS THE KIND OF TEAMMATE YOU WANT.






How does Immanuel Mcelroy make you laugh the best?






MCELROY IS PRETTY SOFT SPOKEN OFF THE COURT, BUT EVERY ONCE AND A WHILE HE WILL HIT YOU WITH A GOOD JOKE.






What was the last DVD that you saw?





TAKEN.



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  GREECE   


The regular season is over, Reds are No.1, Greens No.2 - by Eurobasket News
AEK - Panathinaikos 70-79
The Greens ended regular season with 79-70 road win against AEK for 22-4 record. Even few rounds ago it was clear that PAO will advance to play-off as No.2. On the other side, AEK didn't succeed to reach it with 11-15 score (9th place). Vassilis Spanoulis (193-G-82, agency: Beo Basket) and Sarunas Jasikevicius led PAO in scoring with 12 points each. The hosts got 19 from Travon Bryant and one point less from Istvan Nemeth.

Olympiakos - C.C. Marousi 80-70
Olympiakos ended impressive regular season in Greece with 25 wins and just one defeat setting the new record. It means that the Reds will have home court advantage during the entire play-off. Giorgos Printezis (206-F-85, agency: FCM) and Nikola Vujcic led their team with 12 pts apiece, while Josh Childress followed with 11. Andreas Glyniadakis answered with 14 pts for Maroussi, who also goes to the play-off but from position number 4 (17-9).

Kavala/P. - VAP Kolossos 66-58
9-17 for Kavala (10th place) and 12-14 for the play-off participant VAP Kolossos (8th place). Ivan Vukadinov (193-G-81, agency: Agency No 10) came up with 13 points for the winners, while Yannis Gagaloudis and Will Daniels added 11 pts each. Visitors got 25 points and 9 boards from Lans Harris.

PAOK - AEL 1964 65-57
PAOK goes to play-off from the 7th place with 12-14 record, while AEL is relegated to A2 with poor 2-24. Alexis Kiritsis (198-G-82) shined for the hosts nailing 18 pts. Dejan Tomasevic also had very important role registering double-double, 15 pts and 16 rebs. Fotis Lampropoulos had double-double in loss, 17 pts and 15 rebs.

Olimpia L. - Panionios 78-82
Position No.6 six is reserved for Panionios (16-10), while Olimpia is on 11th place with 8 wins in 26 appearances. The team from Athens got the most from Giannis Kalambokis (195-G-78, agency: FCM) - 24 pts (5 triples). Dimos Dikoudis had 15 and Giannis Georgalis added 11 pts. Corey Belser responded with double-double in the loosing squad, 24 pts and 10 rebs.

Aris - Trikalla 68-61
Aris finished regular season on excellent third place with 19 wins. It means that Aris will meet Panionios in the play-off quarterfinals. Trikalla is the 12th ranked team with 6-20 (survived in A1). Bracey Wright (191-G-84, college: Indiana) led the winners with 16 pts. Andrew Betts added 11. WIlliams Avery nailed 10 pts for the guests.

ESTIA Egaleo - Panellinios 88-99
17-9 for Panellionios (5th place) and 6-20 for Egaleo (13th place, relegated) in regular season. Anthony Grundy (189-G-79, agency: Strategic Sports, college: N.Carolina St.) once again led the winners netting 20 points in just 17 minutes. Jurica Golemac helped with 17 pts, 5 boards and 8 assists. Donnie McGrath and Donell Taylor answered with 21 pts each in defeat.


Stats Leaders - A1
A1 Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1.Smith, Kolossos 18.6
2.Francis, AEL1964 17.4
3.Vasiliadis, PAOK 16.5
4. Grundy, Panellin 15.3
5. Mejia, AEL 15.2
6. Nikolaidis, Trik 13.8
Rebounds Per Game
1.Francin, AEL1964 9.4
2.Wesson, PAOK 8.5
3.Bryant, AEK 7
4.Nelson, Aris 7
5.Tomasevic, PAOK 6.7
Assists Per Game
1.Diamantidis, PAO 3.95
2.Papalouka, Olymp. 3.8
3.Grundy, Panellin 4.2
4. Keys, Marousi 4
5. Avery, Trikala 3.7
Steals Per Game
1.Miles, Panionios 2.2
2. Grundy, Panellin. 2.1
4. Papamak, Panell 1.27
5.Papalouk, Olymp. 1.25
Diamantidis, PAO 1.2
5.Iliadis, Aris 1.1
Blocks Per Game
1.Hardin, Egaleo 1.45
2.Francis, AEL1964 1.38
3.Massie, Trikala 1.3
4.Glyniadakis, AEK 0.9
5.Bryant, AEK 0.83
6. Bourousis, Oly 0.87
7. Dikoudis, Panion 1
8. Fotsis, PAO 0.77
2FGP
1.Batist, PAO 72%
2.Kavaliaus, Kavala 71%
3.Pekovic,PAO 71%
4.Golemac, Panelli. 70%
5.Childress, Oly 69%
3FGP
1.Diamantidis,PAO 61%
2.Diarra, PAOK 60%
3.Pelekanos, Olymp 55%
4.Nemeth, AEK 52%
5.Harris, Kolossos 52%
Free Throws
1.Batis, Olympia 90%
2.Kiritsis, PAOK 90%
3.Vasilievic, Kollos 81%
4.Wesson,PAOK 80%
5.Hatzis,AEK 78%
Childress,Olympiakos 100%
4.Zoroski,Panionios 100%
5.Perperoglou,PAO 100%
6.Jasikeviciuc,PAO 100%
Ranking
1.Pekovic, PAO 0.915
2.Ostojic, Panell. 0.798
3.Massie, Trikala 0.786
4.Perperoglu, PAO 0.759
5.Bourousis, Oly. 0.740


Stats Leaders - A2
A2 Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1.Koutroulias, East 565
2.Kakiouzis, Dafni 495
3.Koronidis, Apollon 470
4.Jelenic, Xanthi, 428
5.Michalos East 415
Rebounds Per Game
1.Latovic, Pagrati 241
2.Koutroulias, East 235 3.Albert, Keravnos 197
4.Dimitriadis, Ermis 188
5.Kartelo KAO 183
Assists Per Game
1.Karidas, Ilisiakos 150
2 Koronidis,Apollon 128
3.Liakopoulos Irak 113
4 Michalos, N. East 111
5.Koukourav, Xanthi 100
Steals Per Game
1.Lewis, Peristeri 47
2.Karidas AO 43
3.Michalos East 39
4.Latovic, Pagr. 37
5.Sourlis, Dafni 35
Blocks Per Game
1.Kartelo, KAOD 22
1.Koutroulias East 21
3.Zupic, KAOD 18
4.Grunberg ICBS 17
5.Psathas, Paner. 15
2FGP
1.Koutroulias, East 68%
2.Kartelo, KAOD 65%
3.Kakiouzis, Dafni 64%
4.Maheras, Keravno 60%
5.Albert, Keravnos 59%
3FGP
1.Greis, Ilisiakos 60%2.Paritsis, Ermis L. 57%
3.Koutroulias, East 57%
Free Throws
1.Kefalas, Aigio 88%
2. Fogel, Ment 87%
3.Kounas, ICBS 85%


Standings - A1
A1 Standings
 1. Olympiakos 25-1 
 2. Panathinaikos 22-4 
 3. Aris 19-7 
 4. C.C. Marousi 17-9 
 5. Panellinios 17-9 
 6. Panionios 16-10 
 7. PAOK 12-14 
 8. VAP Kolossos 12-14 
 9. AEK 11-15 
 10. Kavala/P. 9-17 
 11. Olimpia L. 8-18 
 12. Trikalla 6-20 
 13. ESTIA Egaleo 6-20 
 14. AEL 1964 2-24 


*****************************************************
  IBL   


IBL's Los Angeles Lightning Features Star Studded Roster - by Serafim Karaiskakis
The Los Angeles Lightning is a second year professional basketball team competing in the fifth year International Basketball League (for information on the IBL, see following page).

The Los Angeles Lightning made their name in the 2008 International Basketball League season by assembling a roster full of former NBA players and former UCLA Bruin stars. The Lightning will continue this trend in 2009 with the recently announced signings of 13-year NBA veteran Bryon Russell and California State Senator Tony Strickland (6'5''-F, college: Whittier).

Bryon Russell (6'7''-F-70, agency: Prossin Sports Management, college: Long Beach St.), who spent most of his pro career with the Utah Jazz, making it to the NBA Finals twice against the Chicago Bulls, has played in 841 games in the Association and will be one of several former NBA players on the LA roster, along with Lamond Murray and Keith Closs. Fred Vinson will return as well (Vinson averaged 16.5 points per game for the Lightning in the 2008 season). Also, on the team are former UCLA Bruins Toby Baily (who averaged 19.4 points per game in 2008 with the Lightning) and Billy Knight who won the 3-point shootout at the 2088 IBL All-Star Festival held in Gary, Indiana last June.

Tony Strickland is a 65 California State Senator and Whittier College alumni. Stricklanda long time basketball playertook no time to agree to the offer from Lightning owner Mark Harwell who tongue in cheek insists, this is not a publicity grab, if the guy were 5-feet-7 and had a pot belly, that would be a publicity stunt,' Harwell said. 'But he (Strickland) is a tremendous athlete. ... I do not think people realize what a great athlete he ishe can still dunk the ball.'

Both recently signed playersRussell and Stricklandwill be on display when the Lightning open their 2009 season on May 2nd and 3rd against the visiting Edmonton Energy at Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, CA.
Source LALigtning


*****************************************************
  INDONESIA   


The reds defeat the whites - by Anto Hanayudha
The red team defeat the white team 117-112 in IBL All Stars 2009 game in C-TRA Arena Bandung, West Java. The red team players came from teams such as Satria Muda, CLS Knights, Stadium Bhinneka, Pelita Jaya and Citra Satria. And the white team players came from teams such as Garuda, Aspac, Bima Sakti, Angsapura and MHIM.
Andi Batam Poejakusuma (Pelita Jaya) was MVP in this game. He came from the bench scored 37 points which 33 points made from 3 points shot. This award is verifying him that the former Aspac man is still one of the great shooter in Indonesia.
All stars game opened with national anthem Indonesia Raya. The game started with both teams played tightly. 1st quarter the game finished with score 25-24 for the reds. In 2nd quarter the whites began overtake with score 57-47 until half time.
Slam dunk contest presented in half time. The participants was the defending champion Amin Prihantono (Satria Muda), Isman Thoyib (Aspac), Max Yanto (MHIM), Ronaldo Sitepu and Ronny Gunawan (both Satria Muda). After elimination round, appeared Amin Prihantono and Isman Thoyib into the final. With Superman style like Dwight Howard (NBA), he won this contest. by defeat Amin Prihantono with blindman style like Cedric Ceballos (NBA).
Back to the game, 3rd quarter the whites still dominated the red team with score 82-73. But in 4th quarter the reds bombed the whites with 3 points shotgun. Finally the whites succed beat the reds with score 117-112. The game was very entertain with 3 points shot war. The reds still dominate the whites in IBL all stars game until now. Good game.


*****************************************************
  IRAN   


MAHRAM Won The Most Interesting Game After 2 Extra Times - by Mohammad Ahmadi
MAHRAM 1 - ZOB AHAN 0 : It's the result after first round of Iran Basketball Superleague 2008-2009. First game just finished some minutes ago in Esfahan which is ZobAhan home. At the first of the game, ZobAhan was doing great and the score was 24-17 for ZobAhan in 1st Quarter. Mahram players did better in 2nd quarter and Changed the score to 39-38 for ZobAhan in HalfTime. Again ZobAhan Started Second half better and by great performance of Mike Jones, the Score was 63-58 for ZobAhan in 3rd Quarter but Mahram didn't want to lose the game, so the score was 87-83 for ZobAhan in last seconds and two free throws for Mehdi Kamrani (181-G-82) who was the best player of Mahram in this game. After a great Time Out by Mustafa Hashemi for Mahram and great decision for last seconds, Kamrani made both free throws and in just 10 seconds to finish, Aidin Kabir had a steel on Mike Jones and Jones made a foul on Mehdi Kamrani and two made free throws again and score was 87-87 at the end of 4th quarter and Mike Jones had 5 fouls too.

Mahram started Over Time better than ZobAhan but again at the last seconds ZobAhan made two free throws and score was 98-98 again.

In the seconds over time , Mahram did really better and won the game on 106-113 and Won the Most Interesting Game in Iran in recent years. Now the Score is 1-0 for Mahram and the second game will be in Tehran on monday.


*****************************************************
  IRELAND   


Stats Leaders - Men
Superleague Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 O'Reilly, Demons 26.6
2 Bentley, Ulster 25.2
3 Reed, Hoops 24.1
4 James, Neptune 23.6
5 Hadley, Abrakebabra 23.5
Rebounds Per Game
1 Nagel, Ulster 15.1
2 Washington, Belfast 14.1
3 Deas, Hoops 13.0
4 Taylor, Hoops 13.0
5 Young, Demons 12.0
Assists Per Game
1 Kinevane, Limerick 7.4
2 Reed, Hoops 6.0
3 Parker, UCD/Marian 4.6
4 Hamblet, Demons 4.3
5 Bentley, Ulster 4.3
Steals Per Game
1 McGinn, Neptune 3.0
2 Kelly, Killester 2.7
3 Taylor, Hoops 2.6
Blocks Per Game
1 Smallwood, Tigers 2.9
2 Trimmer, Saints 2.8
3 Washington, Belfast 2.5
2FGP
1 McGinn Neptune 71.6%
2 James, Neptune 71.3%3 Kinevane, Limerick 69.0%
3FGP
1 Trimmer, Saints 50.0%
2 Ryan, Marian 49.2%
3 James, Marian 47.0%


*****************************************************
  ITALY   


Serie A: Deep Montepaschi Siena doesn't rest... - by Stefano Pini
Montepaschi Siena - Air Avellino 84-68
With a great start (17-4 first quarter) Montepaschi Siena overcame Air Avellino at home in a posticipated week 24 Serie A game.
Henry Domercant (192-G-80, college: E.Illinois) scored 22 points in 24' with 4/5 from 3p. Shaun Stonerook (203-F/C-77, college: Ohio) grabber 7 rebounds in 16' 'Heavy rotation' for Pianigiani that used 10 players for at least 15'.
Air Avellino's top scorer was Nikola Radulovic (207-F-73), 15 points in 20'. Air is still 2 points down from playoff zone


Standings - SerieA
SerieA Standings
 1. Montepaschi 27-1 
 2. Armani MI 17-10 
 3. Lottomatica 17-10 
 4. La Fortezza 17-10 
 5. Banca Tercas 16-10 
 6. Benetton 15-12 
 7. NGC Cantu 13-14 
 8. Angelico BI 13-14 
 9. Air AV 12-15 
 10. Carife FE 12-15 
 11. Scavolini 11-16 
 12. Premiata 11-16 
 13. Solsonica 10-17 
 14. Eldo Caserta 10-17 
 15. Fortitudo 9-18 
 16. Snaidero 6-21 


*****************************************************
  KOSOVO   


Stats Leaders
Superleague A Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 Donte Gennie 21,4
2 Samir Shaptahovic 21,3
3 Keena Young 20,1
4 Florian Miftari 19,7
5 Ersid Ljuca 18,9
Rebounds Per Game
1 Mehmeti 13,0
2 Spahiq 12,3
3 Drejaj 9,4
4 Shima 9,5
5 Dragusha 9,1
Assists Per Game
1 1 Brendon Getlin 7,7
2 Nurkanoviq 7,3
3 Drejaj 6,4
4 Ferati 5,0
5 Grapci 3,8
Steals Per Game
1 Drejaj 4,2
2 1 Brendon Getlin 3,3
3 Berisha 2,7
Blocks Per Game
1 Spahiq 3,6
2 Shima 1,3
3 Hanxhiq 1,3


*****************************************************
  LEBANON   


Riyadi gets the title.. - by Maarouf Mawloud
Final (Best of 5):
Mouttahed v/s Riyadi:
Game 4: (If Necessary) Thursday April 23 6pm ----->Manara

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

Riyadi 95-86 Mouttahed

Stats:

Riyadi:
-Nate Johson 27Pts, 6Rbs, 5Ass
-Omar Turk 27Pts, 2Rbs, 1Ass (Includind 9/11 from 3's)
-Ali Mahmoud 22Pts, 2Rbs, 2Ass
-Alexander Radojevic 11Pts, 6Rbs, 4Ass and added 3 Blocks
-Joe Vogel 8Pts, 13Rbs

Mouttahed:
-Darren Kelly 32Pts, 1Rbs, 4Ass (Including 9/12 from 3's)
-Anthony Williams 24Pts, 7Rbs, 5Ass
-Mazen Mneimeh 20Pts, 5Rbs, 5Ass


Mottahed Grabs Game 3 and Extends Series - by Hassan Thini

Same exact scenario haunted the champions tonight in both halves of the game, and this was the major reason for the loss.

During the first quarter and part of the second quarter Mottahed were able to open up a lead that was up to 18 points. However then a big spurt by Riyadi, and especially Nate Johnson who was able to score as he wanted, made it 42-40 by the end of 2 quarters. Nate Johnson had 23 points at the half.

The intermission that is usually a strong point in Riyadis game was not this time, as the home team came into the third quarter firing on all cylenders and the lead was pushed back up to 12 by the end of three. During the 4th quarter Kelly and Williams scored however they shot, and a lucky three from one corner made it 17 points again with 4 and a half minute to go. Then Riyadi started fighting back, with Nate hitting a three, and then Kelly with a technical foul let Nate hit 2 free-throws, and another drive by Nate followed by a Omar three made it 2 points. Riyadi got the stop they needed, and Nate wanted to go to his known and haunting pull-up jumper with Mazen in his face. However the ref had a very bad and questionable call, calling an offensive foul on Nate Johnson while shooting a shot! This was the momentum shifter for Mottahed, and the yellow giants were not to recover from this devastating blow! After that the champions tried to battle back, but it just would not fall for them as various shots where missed and the game ended with an 89-84 Mottahed victory to make it 2-1 in the best of 5 series.

Nate had 35+ points as he was still showing why he is the leader of this team. Nate and his team-mates will have another shot on grabbing the championship tomorrow at 6pm. Nate finished again with a game high.

Written by Jad Halabi



Nate Does it all to Lead Riyadi to a 2-0 Lead over Mottahed! - by Hassan Thini
It is said, good players shine in regular games, while great heroes shine in the tough ones. Nate Johnson showed tonight a whole arsenal of leadership skills, along with basketball skills. Nate came into tonights game listening to music, and staring at the floor while his teammates shot around and warmed up for the game. When Nate finally stepped on the floor you could see that he was not missing a single shot from anywhere on the floor. The game started with the same starting lineups from both teams, and Nate Johnson showed that his hot hand was not only a pregame thing. Nate went on to score the teams first 12 points, and then Moe Ibrahim connected on a three before Nate scored again and just like that the Yellow Giants were up 21-5. However if last nights game was any indication, an early lead is not secure in this series. Just like that Alex committed his 3rd foul and Riyadis strong front court looked thin with Nate moving to the 4 position. Mottahed responded to that, and Kelly drew a three point shot foul as time expired to hit 3 free throws and make it only a 6 point game.

Nate continued to impress in the second quarter, and was literally keeping the team up on his shoulders only. Ali Mahmoud, came off the bench again to provide one hell of a spark and the team was playing well with the absence of starting center Alex. Nate displayed leadership skills on the defensive end, and led his team to a great defensive game. With Riyadi leading by as little as 1 point, Ali and Nate ran with the quarter to make it a 7 point game, however Kelly hit a buzzer beating three pointer to give his team a momentum push, and just a 4 point deficit heading into the second half.

However the giants had another idea in the third with Alex getting back into the game, and Nate still connecting on all shots, along with a great change in defense into a zone 2-3 gave Riyadi another big lead. But a great game from Tony Williams with him hitting three after three kept the northern team in it. However Nate finished the quarter already with 34 point, unleashing fierce crossovers and some amazing pull-up jumpers that seemed impossible, but fell, and the yellows finished the quarter up by 9, 71-60.

With 10 minutes to go in game 2, Mottahed had to make a move, and with Tony Williams and Daren Kelly on the other team no lead is safe! A come-back was forming, but with Nate Johnson taking over yet again defensively and offensively the lead was always constant. Ali mahmoud was coming up with some great penetrations, feeds to Alex and Nate on the other hand blocking shots, drawing fouls, and as usual scoring! With some great D from Omar on Kelly, the main catalyst of the team was down while there was no answer for the two great, Nate and Ali. The game was nothing from after the 5 minute mark as the game was well out of reach and Mottahed trying to do anything to catch up. The game ended with an 88-81 Riyadi win to take a 2-0 lead heading into the third game in Tripoli tomorrow night to try and sweep the northern team.

Nate was with no doubt the best out there, scoring 42 points, blocking shots, and grabbing a big number of boards, while Tony Williams had his best game of the season with 41 points in a losing effort.

Nate the great Riyadi hero has promised a 3-0 sweep in this series! He will look to deliver tonight!


*****************************************************
  LIBERIA   


Standings - LBF First Division (Men)
LBF First Division Standings
 1. Pythons 7-1 
 2. Oilers 7-1 
 3. Kings 6-2 
 4. Barrolle 5-3 
 5. Dream Team 4-4 
 6. Comm. 3-5 
 7. Flames 2-6 
 8. Dream Team II 2-6 
 9. Rockers 0-8 


Standings - LBF Second Division (Men)
LBF 2 Division Standings
 1. Sac Base 3-0 
 2. T-Chons 2-0 
 3. Dream Team 1-0 
 4. Flip Star 1-2 
 5. Supr.Brothers 1-3 
 6. Don Bosco 0-1 
 7. Prince 0-2 


*****************************************************
  LUXEMBOURG   


Standings - DBBL
Diekirch League Standings
Group A
 1. Contern 18-9 
 2. Etzella 17-10 
 3. Sparta 16-11 
 4. Musel Pikes 16-11 
 5. Amicale 15-12 
 6. T71 15-12 
Group B
 1. Black Star 9-14 
 2. Residence 9-14 
 3. Racing 9-14 
 4. Heffingen 3-20 


*****************************************************
  MEXICO   


Standings - CIBACOPA
CIBACOPA Standings
Northern Division
 1. Mineros 24-5 
 2. Hermosillo 16-13 
 3. Trigueros 15-14 
 4. Ostioneros 14-15 
 5. Fuerza Guinda 6-23 
Southern Division
 1. Caballeros 21-8 
 2. Lobos UAD 16-13 
 3. Frayles 14-15 
 4. Pioneros 10-19 
 5. Coras 5-7 


*****************************************************
  NAIA   


Energy Assistant named head coach at Dakota State University - by Eurobasket News
Iowa Energy Assistant Coach Gary Garner has accepted the position of Head Coach at Dakota State University in Madison, SD. Garner will assume duties immediately at Dakota State.

Garner was the Head Coach at Drake University for seven seasons beginning in 1981, and led the Bulldogs to the 1986 NIT tournament. Garner later coached Ft. Hays State to the NCAA Division II National Title in 1996, leading the team to a perfect 34-0 record. During his time at Ft. Hays State, Garner's squad won 49 straight games, the 5th longest streak in college basketball history.

The Iowa Energy introduced Garner as Assistant Coach on March 27, 2007. During his two years with the team, the Energy compiled a 50-51 record. The Energy won the D-League's Central Division this season before falling to Dakota in the 1st round of the playoffs.

'We are going to miss Coach Garner both on the floor and in the community. He was a great ambassador for our franchise and we wish him the best at Dakota State,' said Energy General Manager Chris Makris.

Courtesy of www.oursportscentral.com


*****************************************************
  NBA   


NBA Round: 2 (Quarter-Finals) - by Eurobasket News

Eastern Conf
76ers - Magic 87-96
Orlando Magic made it last night against the 76ers tying the quarterfinals series to 1-1. Courtney Lee (6'5''-G/F-85, agency: Arik Krayn Services, college: W.Kentucky) led the scorers in victory nailing 24 points. Rashard Lewis and Hidayet Turkoglu had 16 pts each, while Dwight Howard, Rafer Alston and Anthony Johnson delivered 11 pts apiece. On the other side, Andre Miller had 30, Andre Iguodala added 21 pts, 8 rebs and 7 as, while Thaddeus Young contributed with 20 pts. Game number 3 will be played tomorrow in Philly.

Pistons - Cavaliers 82-94
Cleveland Cavaliers outplayed Detroit Pistons 94-82 grabbing 2-0 lead in the quarterfinals of Eastern Conference. Visitors had nice last quarter ending it 32-17, but it was enough only for minus 12 at the end. LeBron James (6'8''-F-84) once again was a key player for the Cavs collecting 29 points, 13 rebounds and 6 assists. Maurice Williams was behind him with 21 pts and 7 boards, while Delonte West stopped on 20 pts. Richard Hamilton top-scored for the Pistons with 17 pts. Third game will be played on Friday in Detroit. Portland Trail Blazers tied the quarterfinal series against Houston Rockets to 1-1 (Western Conference).

Heat - Hawks 108-93
This quarterfinal is also tied. Miami Heat managed to win last night in Atlanta 108-93 mostly owing to Dwyane Wade (6'4''-G-82, college: Marquette), who collected 33 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists. Daequan Cook followed him with 20, while Jermaine O'Neal nailed one point less. The hosts got 18 pts from Michael Bibby and double-double from Josh Smith, 17 pts and 10 rebs. Game No.4 is scheduled for Saturday.

Bulls - Celtics 115-118
The reigning champion managed to beat Chicago Bulls 118-115 tying the quarterfinal series to 1-1. It was another very exciting match and Ray Allen (6'6''-G-75, college: Connecticut) was a hero draining a triple with 2 seconds left. It was his sixth 3-pointer last night. Allen was the leading scorer in his team with 30 points. Glen Davis also shined for Boston collecting 26 points and 9 rebounds. Rajon Rondo was the only player with triple-double in both teams: 19 points, 12 rebounds and 16 assists. Ben Gordon was on fire for the Bulls scoring impressive 42 points (6 triples). John Salmons was second scorer of the team with 17. Third game is scheduled for April 23rd in Chicago.


Western Conf
Mavericks - Spurs 84-105
In the second game of the day, San Antonio Spurs tied the score vs Dallas Maverics to 1-1, 105-84. It was an easy win for Tony Parker (6'0''-G-80) and his teammates. The French superstar led SAS nailing 38 points and dishing out 8 assists. Tim Duncan was behind him registering double-double, 13 pts and 11 boards. Dallas this time got the most point from Jason Terry -16. Dirk Nowitzki (6'11''-F-78) and Jason Kidd delivered 14 pts each. Game No.3 will be played on April 23rd in Dallas.

Rockets - Trail Blazers 103-107
The Blazers escaped with 107-103 win. Brandon Roy (6'6''-G-84, college: Washington) was central figure of this match nailing 42 points and grabbing 7 boards. LaMarcus Aldridge was behind him with double-double, 27 pts and 12 boards. Aaron Brooks and Von Wafer responded with 44 points together in loss. Third game is scheduled for Friday in Houston.

Jazz - Lakers 109-119
LA Lakers jumped to 2-0 against Utah Jazz with 119-109 win (Western Conference). Kobe Bryant (6'6''-G-78) led his team with 26 points, 6 rebounds and 9 assists. Pau Gasol also had important role collecting 22 points and 6 rebs. Deron Williams shined in loss netting 35 points and handing out 9 assists. Game No.3 will be played tomorrow in Salt Lake City.

Hornets - Nuggets 93-108
Denver Nuggets made a huge step forward to Western Conference semifinals beating NO Hornets last nigh for 2-0 lead. Chauncey Billups (6'3''-G-76, college: Colorado) once again led his team in scoring - 31 pts. Carmelo Anthony also shined collecting 22 pts and 9 assists, while JR Smith netted 15 pts. David West shined in loss with 21 pts and 10 rebs. Third game - Saturday in NO.


Magic center Howard named NBA Defensive Player of Year - by Eurobasket
Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard (6'10''-F-85) has been named the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year on Tuesday after becoming the fifth player in league history in rebounds and blocked shots.
The three-time All-Star center received 542 points, including 105 first-place votes from a panel of 119 sportswriters and broadcasters, to easily outdistance the rest of the field.
Howard, 23, led the NBA in rebounding with 13.8 per game and blocked shots, 2.9 per game, as he helped the Magic to third place in the Eastern Conference, as well as the team's second consecutive Southeast crown.
'It's something you got to want to do,' Howard said. 'It's all about winning, and I try to have that mentality of protecting the paint.'
Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James (6'8''-F-84), the favorite to win the NBA's Most Valuable Player Award this season, finished second with148 points, while Miami Heats' Dwyane Wade (6'4''-G-82, college: Marquette) was third with 90 points.


Rose follows in MJ's footsteps: Rookie of the Year - by Eurobasket
Like most good point guards, Derrick Rose (6'4''-G-88, college: Memphis) rarely gives anything away. This time, he couldnt resist.
After learning Wednesday he is the NBAs rookie of the year, Rose let a little secret slip: He wanted the award. Badly.
When I first came into the season, my biggest thing was to get this award, Rose said. I was telling you all that I didnt care, but I did. You really do want this award. There was a lot of talent out there that I had to go against.
Rose, who led his hometown Bulls to the playoffs and restored hope to a franchise in disarray, was the runaway pick.
For Derrick to take the ball from Day 1, to lead our basketball team, to play at the level he played at is really, really significant and certainly means that as we go forward here, weve got the guy that we are going to build around, general manager John Paxson said.
Rose became the third Bulls player to win the award Wednesday, joining Michael Jordan (6'7''-F-63, college: N.Carolina) and Elton Brand (6'8''-F-79, college: Duke). He received 111 first-place votes and 574 points from a national panel of sports writers and broadcasters; runner-up O.J. Mayo (6'5''-G-87, college: USC) of the Memphis Grizzlies received five first-place votes and 127 points.


Kings not keeping Kenny Natt as coach? - by Eurobasket News
It wasn't quite the chickens coming home to roost, but it was close.

On Tuesday night at the Roseville Sports Center, the constructed stage inside a basketball gym filled with Kings season-ticket holders was shared by team co-owner Gavin Maloof, basketball president Geoff Petrie and team president John Thomas.

In what was dubbed 'a town-hall barbecue,' they were all there to discuss the painful season that had finally passed, as well as the future. After the franchise's worst season in its 50-year history, there was no shortage of questions that made the powers-that-be squirm in their seats. And when the topic of the looming-but-unofficial end of the Kenny Natt era as coach was brought up, Maloof shrugged and yielded to Petrie.

'We have a coach right now,' Petrie said. 'That situation is still being evaluated. There obviously needs to be resolution, and there will be.'

Petrie was just as vague with the media afterward as he had been during the event.

'It's still under evaluation,' he reiterated. 'And when we have something to say about it, we'll say it.'

But according to sources close to the team, Natt is expected to be informed by the end of this week that he won't return as head coach. Petrie said he is scheduled to leave Friday for Europe, where Spanish sensation Ricky Rubio is on his list of must-see prospects.

Yet just as Petrie has taken his time addressing Natt's situation mainly because he became a grandfather for the second time and was in Portland, Ore., with his daughter over the weekend and through Tuesday it appears the search will be equally deliberate.

Whereas the Washington Wizards have reportedly offered their head-coaching position to Flip Saunders, the Kings will likely take their time mulling over a much-longer list of candidates in the coming months that is thought to include Eddie Jordan, Mike Fratello, Jeff Ruland and John Whisenant.

While Jordan is believed to be one of the many, the former Wizards coach made it clear on a Washington Post Live television show Tuesday that he is ready to coach again. And when asked about the Kings' position, Jordan did little to dispute the idea that he wants to return to the place where he coached late in the 1996-97 season (going 6-9) and the entire 1997-98 campaign (27-55).

'You never know in the NBA,' Jordan said when asked about returning to the Kings. 'You just never know how things work. I haven't heard anything officially. I would think the teams that will make changes or will be looking for coaches are getting their end-of-season work done now, as far as exit interviews and evaluating their team and their staff.'

After calling for some 'dignity' in this process, it appears Petrie has held up his end of that bargain. According numerous league sources, Kings representatives have not contacted any candidates about the position.

Courtesy of www.sacbee.com


*****************************************************
  NCAA1   


Cody Ellis signs with Billikens - by Eurobasket News
Saint Louis University head men's basketball coach Rick Majerus today announced that 6-foot-8 forward Cody Ellis (202-F-90) (Perth, Australia/Lake Ginninderra/Institute of Sport) has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University and play basketball for the Billikens. Ellis will have four years of eligibility beginning with the 2009-10 academic year.

'Cody is certainly a welcome addition to the team, first and foremost because of his character,' Majerus said. 'He is a committed student and someone who appreciates the opportunity that the Australian Institute of Sport has provided him. Cody gives us a dimension we currently do not have - an outside shooting big man who can knock down the 3-pointer, yet can post up with authority and rebound. Cody will be perfect in our NBA set pick and pop plays and will fit well into our motion offense. We expect him to become a go-to-guy, both on the block and outside for the three.'

'Similar to the Lisch family, the bloodline is certainly there,' Majerus said. 'Cody's father, Mike, was a stalwart and a star for the Australian National Team as well as the Perth Wildcats, the premier professional league in Australia. Cody is the son of a coach and plays like one - smart, committed and passionate.

'Cody, and anyone else who plays for the Emus, has been very well coached,' Majerus said. 'Coach Marty Clarke does a superb job of preparing them for the rigors of international ball. I feel that Cody as well as Christian Salecich, who we signed last fall, may both one day play for the Australian National team, the Boomers.

'Cody's passing skills, unselfishness and feel for the game belie his years, having been so well coached by Clarke, as well as by his father, Mike Ellis, who coached the Perth Wildcats in the Australian NBL.' Majerus said. 'We are excited for Cody to come on board with us, and our players are certainly looking forward to playing alongside someone with his commitment and skill set.'

Ellis is ranked as the No. 1 power forward and the No. 3 player overall in the 2009 class in Australia, and recruiting service Scouts, Inc., rates him the No. 76 power forward nationally. He averaged 14 ppg and eight rpg while hitting 42 percent from 3-point range for the Australian Institute of Sport, the elite academy in Canberra, Australia. A.I.S. has produced more than 20 Division I players, including teammate Christian Salecich who signed last fall with the Billikens. The duo led A.I.S. to the 2008 Southeast Australian Basketball League finals. Ellis helped Australia earn a silver medal at the 2007 Oceania Tournament and helped his team win the bronze medal game at the 2008 Albert Schweitzer Tournament in Germany. He was selected to the 2009 Australia U-19 Nationals All-Tournament team, and he will be a member of the Junior National Australia team at the upcoming FIBA World U-19 Championships in New Zealand.

Ellis is the fifth member of the Billikens' recruiting class this season. Last fall, SLU signed 6-5 guard Jeff Reid (Topeka, Kan./Hayden), 6-8 forward Cory Remekun (Mesquite, Texas/Mesquite), 6-4 guard Christian Salecich (Gold Coast, Australia/ Lake Ginninderra/Institute of Sport) and 6-7 forward Jon Smith (Grove City, Ohio/Grove City).

Courtesy of www.slubillikens.cstv.com


Jeremy Tyler becomes first player to leave high school early for pro hoops - by Eurobasket News
We've reached the point in American sports where a player leaving college early to turn pro is routine. But Jeremy Tyler, a 6-foot-11 basketball player from San Diego, is doing something unprecedented: He's leaving high school early to turn pro.

Tyler, considered the best high school big man in the country, had originally committed to enroll at Louisville. But he now tells the New York Times that he'll drop out of high school and play pro ball in Europe, most likely for a team in Spain. Tyler told the Times that he's making the move because he's too focused on getting better at basketball to spend time hitting the books, adding that 'people look to college for more off-the-court stuff versus being in the gym and getting better.'

Brandon Jennings finished high school last year and played professionally in Europe instead of going to college, but no American player has dropped out of high school to play pro ball in Europe.

Some will criticize Tyler for choosing sports over education, but I think he's doing the right thing: Thousands of athletes go through a charade of being college students when they're really just on campus to hone their athletic crafts, and it's refreshing that Tyler is honest enough to admit that he just wants to think about basketball.

The 17-year-old Tyler left San Diego High School before finishing his junior year, but he says he'll try to get his diploma by taking classes online. He also says he's ready to spend two years in Spain before returning in June of 2011 for the NBA draft.

Tyler told the Times of his European excursion, 'It will help me get better and grow up.'

Courtesy of www.ncaabasketball.com


*****************************************************
  PAKISTAN   


Pakistan back to international competition - by Gianni Pascucci
Some weeks ago, the selection committee of the Pakistan Amateur Basketball Federation (PABBF) named 21 players for the training camp in preparation for the 11th South Asian Games to be held in Dhaka (Bangladesh) from January 29 to February 8, 2010. The players were selected after watching their performance in the 48th National Basketball Championship, ended in Lahore some days before. This move allows Pakistan to come back to international competitions, more almost five years after its last appearence. The last time the National Basketball Team took part in an international event was the first Islamic Solidarity Games in 2005 in Saudi Arabia. A large majority of the selected players was not even part of that team. And the last Pakistani participation to South Asian Games dates back to 1995, when the regional showpiece was held in Chennai (India). The coaching staff, the dates and venue for the training camp are yet to be decided. The announcement was made by the PABBF Secretary Col (retd) Naseem Butt, who is also the chairman of the Selection Committee, formed also by Col Aftab, Rasheed Butt and Khawaja Ghulam Dastagir.


*****************************************************
  PALESTINE   


Khadamat AlBreij Leading with AlRiyadi in Second Place in Round 3 - by Tamara Awartani
Gaza AlRiyadi vs. Khadamat Jabalia 86 64
A nice game to watch led by the skilled AlRiyadi team while Jabalia didnt let them win easily specially by leading in the 3rd quarter. Mohammed Ashour, Shadi AlBaz and Mohammed AlWheidi had great shots and rebounds leading the win for their team.
While Mohammed Murad was the star of the game who was unstoppable with his 3pointers and drives.
1st 21- 15, 2nd 26-17, 3rd 12-18, 4th 27-14

Khadamat AlBreij vs. Khadamat Khan Younis 92 77
The game started off competitively, both teams were playing strong having several ties during the game, but the experience of AlBreij players gave them an edge to win the game.
The scorers for AlBreij were Mohammed Nour, Hasan Ismael and Raed AlHweihi. While Khan Younis players were Ibrahim Abu Rahal who was the star of the game along with Mohammed AlAnani who stood out with his smooth 3pointers and Ahmad AlHaj.
1st 10-15, 2nd 19-18, 3rd 24-21, 4th 27-17


Khadamat AlBreij and AlRiyadi Win their Second Round - by Tamara Awartani
Khadamat AlBreij vs. Khadamat Rafah 70 56
A strong game led all the way by AlBreij while Rafah kept on playing hard till the last second.
AlBreij players were more experienced and focused such as Mohammed Nour, Ahmad Wishah the scorers along with Hasan Ismael & Raed AlHweihi who stood out with their skills while Wael Tayem & Ihab Aqel were the scorers for Rafah playing hard all the way.
1st 15-15, 2nd 21 16, 3rd 17 11, 4th 17-14


Gaza AlRiyadi vs. Khadamat Khan Younis 71 57
A fluctuating game that started off with determination to win by AlRiyadi while Khan Younis kept their strong will to win. Shadi AlBaz stood out in the game with his great shots and several 3pointers along with Mohammed Ashour, Khaled AlHusari, Shadi Abed and Jamal Abu Kmeil showed their skills.
While Ibrahim Abu Rahal and Ahmad Abu Zaid played hard and were the scorers for Khan Younis.
1st 27 14, 2nd 9-16, 3rd 22-7, 4th 20 13


Standings - Men
PBBA Standings
Gaza Group
 1. Gaza SC 3-0 
 2. Khadamat B. 3-0 
 3. Khadamat DA. 2-1 
 4. Rafah 2-1 
 5. Khadamat KY. 0-4 
 6. Khadamat J. 0-4 
West Bank Group
 1. Orthodox R. 9-0 
 2. Ibdaa D. 9-0 
 3. Orthodox BJ 9-1 
 4. Sarriyet 8-1 
 5. De La Salle 8-2 
 6. Hiteen 7-3 
 7. Qalandia 6-4 
 8. Al Ahli 6-4 
 9. Catholic A. 6-4 
 10. Ebal 5-4 
 11. Islami 4-6 
 12. AlBireh 3-6 
 13. Huwara 3-6 
 14. Thaqafi BS 2-8 
 15. RaI AlSaleh 2-8 
 16. Al Fara 1-8 
 17. Thaqafi T. 0-9 
 18. Balata 0-10 


*****************************************************
  PUERTO RICO   


Standings - BSN
BSN Standings
 1. Bayamon 4-0 
 2. Quebradillas 2-1 
 3. Caguas 2-1 
 4. Ponce 2-2 
 5. Santurce 1-1 
 6. San German 1-2 
 7. Carolina 1-2 
 8. Humacao 1-2 
 9. Mayaguez 1-2 
 10. Arecibo 1-2 
 11. Guaynabo 0-1 


Last games (5) - Bayamon remains on top perfect - by Eurobasket News
Bayamon - Santurce 74-72
Bayamon outsmarted Santurce 74-72 remaining on top of BSN standings undefeated (3-0). Franklin Western (200-F-72, college: Providence) top-scored in victory with 22, Javier Mojica had 19, while Christian Dalmau helped with 15 pts, 7 boards and 6 assists. On the other side, Santurce got 19 pts from Lary Ayuso (1-1).

Mayaguez - Arecibo 62-73
Angel Figueroa (196-G/F-81, agency: Paris Global Sports, college: Dowling) stepped up for Arecibo in this game registering double-double, 17 pts and 10 rebounds. Michael Watson and Christopher Vega followed him with 10 pts each. Dan Langhi responded with 12 points in the loosing squad. Both teams now have 1-2 record.

Guaynabo - Ponce 81-87
Ponce cruised past Guaynabo jumping to 2-1 record in BSN. Lee Nailon (204-F-75, agency: Octagon, college: TCU) led the scorers with 25, while Roberto Jose Hatton also shined scoring 21 points and handing out 12 assists. Carlos Escalera was on fire on the other side - 26 pts.

Humacao - Caguas 79-86
2-1 for Caguas and 0-2 for Humacao after this game. Matt Freije (206-F-81, agency: Priority Sports, college: Vanderbilt) and Rafael Perez combined 50 points in the wining squad. Humacao got 18 pts and 16 boards from Kurt Looby.

San German - Quebradillas 85-81
First win for San German this season and mostly owing to Ruben Wolkowisky (207-C-73), who nailed 21 points and pulled down 9 rebounds. Omar Alvarado was behind him with 18 pts (4 of 6 from behind the arc). Marcus Williams contributed with 20 pts for Quebradillas, who also has 1-1.


*****************************************************
  ROMANIA   


Div.A Round: 2 (Quarter-Finals) - by Eurobasket News
Pitesti - Ploiesti 74-88
Ploiesti qualified for the Romanian championship semifinals after dealing with Pitesti in the second straight game. Darius Hargrove (193-G-82, agency: Global Sports Plaza, college: Virginia Union) once again led the way for Ploiesti scoring 22 points and making 4 steals. Arvydas Cepulis added 13 points in the victory. Liviu Dumitru had 21 points and 6 boards for Pitesti in defeat.

Rovinari - Timisoara 86-79
Rovinari stayed in the race for the trophy after they escaped elimination beating Timisoara at home court. Kibwe Trim (208-F/C-84, agency: Priority Sports, college: Sacred Heart) and Paul Hafford scored 24 points apiece to lead the hosts. Bogdan Popescu produced 16 points and 10 boards in the victory. Dan Paltinisau responded with 18 points and 9 caroms for Timisoara.

Otopeni - CSU Brasov 85-77
Otopeni advanced into the next round as they held off Brasov in Game 2. Milan Medvedj (183-G-79) knocked down 24 points, grabbed 6 boards and dished out 4 assists to lead the home side. Andrei Capusan fired 22 points in the winning effort. Rashaun Broadus provided 27 points, 5 boards and 5 assists in the loss.

U.Mobitel.CN - CSU Atlassib 99-89
UMobitelco earned the first win over CSU Atlassib to level things in the series. Zoran Krstanovic (205-C-82) poured in 24 points and pulled down 10 boards to fuel the Cluj Napoca team. Branko Cuic added 20 points and 6 assists in the victory. Bryant Matthews answered with 18 points and 6 boards for Atlassib.


*****************************************************
  RUSSIA   


Standings - Superleague B
B Superleague Standings
 1. Avtodor 42-4 
 2. Magnitogorsk 33-12 
 3. Lok.Novos. 31-15 
 4. Revda 31-17 
 5. N.Novgorod 29-17 
 6. Chelabinsk 27-19 
 7. Saransk 25-21 
 8. Krasnodar 24-23 
 9. Rjazan 19-25 
 10. Naltchik 18-26 
 11. Irkutsk 18-28 
 12. Zaretchny 17-28 
 13. Severstal 12-34 
 14. Kursk 8-34 
 15. Ural Ekater. 7-38 


*****************************************************
  SAINT KITTS   


Antigua and St.Kitts Basketball Champions face-off - by Eurobasket
Basketball City will come alive this weekend when the St.Kitts Amateur Basketball Association (SKABA) will be hosting the Champion Basketball team from neighbouring Antigua & Barbuda. The two ti will arrive here on Friday and will engage local club teams in matches on Saturday and Sunday evenings. The visiting basketball team is the Antigua Defense Force Warriors who is the top ranked team in Antigua and the multiple time Antigua Barbuda Basketball Association Division 1 playoff champions. The team features some of Antigua s top and national players including Marlon Charles (186-G-76), Mario Davis (198-F/G-80, college: Missouri Western), Shawn Williams, Kelvin Simon and Vivian Destin.
On Saturday The Warriors will engage an all star team from the Challengers Community League in challengers. The team will then play Defending SKABA national champions Rams Hitters on Sunday as part of the official opening of the 2009 SKABA League.
According to officials of the Antigua team the players are keenly anxious to play their counterparts here on St.Kitts. According to coach Bradbury Browne the Warriors are looking forward to matching their skills against the St.Kitts Champions Hitters. Browne indicated that he was keen on viewing how well his team will match up against the top club in St.Kitts.
I expect an exciting and keenly contested match-up , said Hitters Coach James Hanley . We have been in training for some time now in preparation for the start of the league and the Antiguan Champions will be the perfect team to access our readiness for the 2009 season, Hanley continued.
Hitters this year will feature the basically the same team that won them the national title last year. With the re-acquisition of star forward Anthony Jabal and the pending summer return of Marvin Davis and the almost 7 foot center Jerran Morris Hitters will no doubt have to be considered favorites. However Ghetto Roots has acquired national guard Levi By-By Fyfeild from the McKnight Trotters. Fyfeilds presence is sure to enhance the team and will ensure that Ghetto Roots will once again be Hitters toughest challengers for the 2009 season.
The 2009 season tips off at 5pm on Sunday with the traditional march past and 2 match-ups including 2009 finalist Horsfords Ghetto Roots vs 2007 Champions the St.Pauls Tuff Knots in game 1 and the Antigua Champions the defense force warriors vs SKABA Champions Rams Hitters

Source St Kitts Basketball


*****************************************************
  SERBIA   


Standings - A Liga
A Standings
Superleague Group A
 1. Partizan 4-0 
 2. FMP 2-2 
 3. Vojvodina 1-3 
 4. Metalac 1-3 
Superleague Group B
 1. Hemofarm 4-0 
 2. Crvena Zvez. 3-1 
 3. Swiss.Lions 1-3 
 4. Borac 0-4 
Places 9-19
 1. Napredak 15-11 
 2. Mega HL 15-11 
 3. Radnicki 034 13-13 
 4. Ergonom 12-14 
 5. Novi Sad 12-14 
 6. Radnicki I. 12-14 
 7. Sloga 11-15 
 8. Masinac 10-16 
 9. Tamis 10-16 
 10. Vizura 9-17 
 11. Zdravlje 6-20 


Partizan's Velickovic takes Rising Star Trophy - by Eurobasket
A fun-to-watch forward who brought his team close to the Final Four for a second consecutive year, Novica Velickovic (205-F-86) of Partizan Belgrade, has been rewarded with the 2009 Euroleague Rising Star Trophy in a vote of the competition's head coaches. Velickovic, 22, exploded in his fourth Euroleague season, becoming not only Partizan's newest go-to scorer, but one of the competitions most decisive players in the crucial Top 16 round. Indeed, Velickovic won the MVP award for February, the only month exclusively devoted to the Top 16, while leading Partizan into the playoffs. He finished the season as Partizan's top scorer, with 11.5 points per game, and it's second best rebounder, with 5.1 on average. Velickovic was also among his team's best three players in steals, assists and blocks. Velickovic also ranked among the Euroleague's best 25 players of the season in both scoring and rebounds. Most of all, Velickovic proved to be a team leader despite his age at the most crucial juncture of the season, averaging 14.5 points and 6.7 rebounds in Partizan's four victories during the Top 16. Led by Velickovic, the young Partizan team generated such a following in Belgrade that the team broke the all-time attendance record for European club competitions by attracting 22,567 fans to its last Top 16 home game. For his unique combination of talent and leadership skills, the Euroleague head coaches have tabbed Velickovic as the rising star of the competition this season.

The five-year old Rising Star Trophy recognizes the best Euroleague player who was younger than 22 on July 1 of the summer before the season started. In one of the closest votes ever, Regal FC Barcelona forward Ersan Ilyasova (207-F-87) and Real Madrid point guard Sergio Llull (178-G-87) tied for second place, right behind Velickovic. Further back in third place was his Partizan teammate, swingman Milenko Tepic (198-G-87, agency: Beo Basket). Fifth place was tied between Emir Preldzic (206-F-87, agency: Beo Basket) of Fenerbahce and yet another Partizan youngster, forward Jan Vesely (211-F-90). The Rising Star Trophy is among several end-of-season honors awarded by Euroleague Basketball. Already announced have been the Alphonso Ford Top Scorer Trophy, which was won by Igor Rakocevic (191-G-78) of Tau Ceramica, and the Best Defender Trophy, which went to Dimitris Diamantidis (196-G-80) of Panathinaikos for a fifth straight year. Still to be announced are the nominees for the All-Euroleague team. The All-Euroleague first and second teams, plus the Euroleague MVP, will be revealed at the Euroleague Basketball Awards Ceremony on May 2 during the Final Four in Berlin. The Aleksander Gomelskiy Coach of the Year Trophy and the Euroleague Club Executive of the Year are post-season awards.

A year ago, Velickovic had already established himself as a key to Partizan's first playoffs appearance of the decade. This season, he returned as a team leader to repeat that accomplishment, leading a young team whose competitive spirit attracted massive attention in Belgrade and beyond. Velickovic shined from the very beginning of the season, showing himself to be a new leader for head coach Dusko Vujosevic as Partizan upset Real Madrid in its Euroleague home opener. Velickovic would score in double digits in six of the first seven regular season games to put Partizan in position to reach the Top 16. In the next round, he started even stronger, with 19 points and 10 rebounds - his fifth career double-double - as Partizan topped regular season group winner Lottomatica Roma and Velickovic earned the Top 16 Week 2 MVP honor. That lit the fuse for four consecutive victories with which Partizan locked up an early playoff spot. By pacing the team in scoring, rebounds, steals and index rating for the month, Velickovic proved the driving force in Partizan's playoff run and, as such, was Euroleague Basketball's choice as MVP for February. Later, in his team's final Euroleague game of the season, Velickovic re-confirmed his potential with 26 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists in Game 3 of the best-of-five playoffs against defending champion CSKA.

Velickovic is the fifth winner of the Rising Star Trophy. Last season the award went to Danilo Gallinari (205-G/F-88, agency: Players Group) of AJ Milano. Rudy Fernandez (197-G-85) of DKV Joventut won it in 2007. The 2006 trophy was awarded to Andrea Bargnani (209-F/C-85) of Benetton Treviso while in 2005 the winner was Erazem Lorbek (210-F/C-84, college: Michigan St.) of Climamio Bologna.

Courtesy of Euroleague


*****************************************************
  SLOVENIA   


Standings - 1A
Liga Standings
Places 1-8
 1. U.Olimpija 8-1 
 2. Helios 8-1 
 3. Krka 6-3 
 4. Slovan 4-5 
 5. Polzela 4-5 
 6. Zlatorog 4-5 
 7. Elektra 1-8 
 8. Luka Koper 1-8 
Places 9-13
 1. TCG Mercator 12-18 
 2. Zagorje 12-18 
 3. Alpos S. 11-19 
 4. Epic Misel 10-20 
 5. Nova Gorica 9-21 


Liga UPC Round: 9 (Elimination Round, with box-scores) - by Eurobasket News

Group 1-8
Helios - Elektra 83-78
Helios overcame a 12-point third quarter decifit to take an 81-76 lead with 2:46 remaining. Aliaksei Lashkevich (203-F-78, agency: VTBM/SRBM) scored 16 points, Nicholas Jacobson 13, Vjekoslav Petrovic 11 and Miha Zalokar had 10 points and 16 rebounds. Elektra opened second half with 12 straight points to take a largest lead of the game, 54-42. Nikola Ivanovic collected 21 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists,* More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule

Polzela - U.Olimpija 56-85
Olimpija trailed only at 16-18 early in second quarter and handed Hopsi its worst loss of the season. Vladimir Golubovic (212-C-86) collected 16 points and 12 rebounds, Jasmin Hukic scored 12 points, Damjan Rudez (206-F-86) 11 and Brian Greene and Marko Maravic added 10 points apiece while Nemanja Jelesijevic was the only scorer in * More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule

Krka - Zlatorog 67-75
Zlatorog moved ahead by 40-34 at the break, then outscored Krka by 12-1 over the first two minutes of the second half to take a 52-35 lead that never dipped below double digits until 1:08 left. Dario Krejic scored 27 points off the bench and Uros Lucic and Vincent Hunter netted 23 of their 27 combined points in the first half. Krka commited 20 turnovers and lost three of their four last four games. * More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule

Slovan - Luka Koper 91-77
A 16-2 run spanning halftime gave Slovan a 56-44 lead in the third quarter. Marko Lekic (211-C-85) scored 23 points, Dejan Delic added 21 and Zoran Dragic had 12 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists. Koper was outrebounded by 22-34 and 2-12 on the offensive glass. * More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule

Group 9-13
Alpos S. - Zagorje 83-67
Takais Brown had 18 points and 13 rebounds, Marcus Crenshaw (178-G-86, college: Cal.St. Fullerton) and Asmir Sadibasic scored 17 points each and Nejc Glavas 14. Zagorje had two players with double-double. David Paris collected 25 points and 12 rebounds and * More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule

Nova Gorica - TCG Mercator 77-76
Gorica trailed by as many as 22 points at halftime, before outscored TCG Mercator 23-6 during the third quarter. Score was tied three times and there was just one lead change. Once Gorica grabbed a 52-51 lead, it never let go despite multiple pushes from Mercator. Habib Ademi (204-F/C-70, college: S.Indiana) scored 20 points, Rok Perko added 13, Vlado Pasalic 11 and Darko Kastratovic posted 8 of his 10 points in the last quarter. * More comments for this game already posted by the local correspondent Zeljko Zule


Short interview with Gil Goodrich, leading scorer of the Liga UPC - by Uros Vujic
- THE SEASON IS FINISHED HOW DO YOU FEEL?
I am very sore. Towards the end of the season I had a couple of injuries that I had to play through. I managed to do that and now when I go home I will get them checked out so I will be ready to go back to working out in a couple of weeks.
- ARE YOU SATISFIED WITH THE SEASON AND YOUR PLAY?
No I am never satisfied for the way I play. I always feel like I can do better and I hold myself to very high standards out on the floor.
- WHAT ABOUT NEXT SEASON, WILL WE SEE YOU AGAIN HERE IN SLOVENIJA?
I had a great time here and loved the people as well. But I have to take a step up next year. I have a couple options for next season, but I will not make my mind up until the end of June, where I will be playing next season.
- FOR THE END WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO YOUR FANS HERE IN ZAGORJE?
Well I would tell my fans here in Zagorje that I am so apprieciated of them and I thank them for all the support through the tough and good times in the season. They stuck with me and our team through whatever happened out on the court. Everytime I would see my fans outside in the city of Zagorje they would make conversation and say hi. And I can not say enough to thank them for that it really made my time here a whole lot easier.


*****************************************************
  SWITZERLAND   


Fribourg Victorious in Game 1 of the semifinal - by Alexander Davis
The Semifinals of the Swiss league championship sarted Tuesday night, as the best defensive team, Fribourg, is taking on the high octane offense of the Lugano Tigers. In what appears to be another great series, the Siwss champs started the semifinals with a 89-76 victory of the Lugano on Tuesday. Both teams were on the attack early in the game as Fribourg jumped out to a 26-20 lead after the 1st quarter. Olympic which was lead in the 1s quarter by Oliver Vogt (209-C-80) and Pascal Perrier-David (184-G-75) hot shooting, but Lugano seemed to get everyone involved in the period, as several players had 3-5 points. In the 2nd quarter is where Fribourg blew the game open. They tighten the reigns defensively as Valentin Wegmann (192-G-79), and Tresore Quidome (192-G-80, agency: Interperformances) played outstanding defense agaisnt Lugano's 2 wing stars Derek Stockalper (198-G/F-84, college: Cal Poly - SLO), and Dusan Mladjan (199-G-86, agency: Interperformances) , who came in averaging 22.6 points a game. Fribourg forced Lugano into bad shots, and bad decisions, and got several transiton baskets off of the turnovers. Fribourg also began to dominate inside feeding Oli Vogt, who was unstoppable inthe paint. The end of the 1st half was a flury for Fribourg as Marcus 'The Warrior Sloan (205-F-82, college: TCU) ignited the team scoring 6 straight points as the half ended, including a baseline fadeaway at the buzzer. Fribourg outscored Lugano 27-15, and took a 53-35 lead into the lockerroom. In the 3rd quarter Lugano came out began to use the pick and roll to exploit Fribourg. Gray and Marko Verginella (202-F-78, agency: Interperformances) scored on 4 consectuive pick and roll plays, and Stockalper hit a transition 3 to cut the lead to 10 points. Fribourg however would respond with timely 3 point shots from DJ Harrison and Perrier-David to push the lead back up to 16. The lone bright spot for Lugano was Virginella who finished with 19 points. They were lead in scoring however by Josh Almanson (203-F-81, college: Bowling Green), who struglgled scoring against Sloan, Almanson was held to 6-15 from the field and finished with 22 points. Derek Stockalper had 14, and Kameron Gray finished with 10. Fribourg was led by Oli Vogt's monster 28 points, followed by Perrier-David's 18, 'The Warrior' finished with 16 and 6 rebounds, and Harrison rounded out the scoring with 13. Game 2 will be played in Lugano on Saturday.

LNA Round: 1 (Semi-Finals) - by Eurobasket News
Vacallo - Boncourt 77-66
Vacallo held off Boncourt in the semifinal opener. Nikola Dacevic (205-G/F-79, agency: Interperformances) nailed 16 points and collected 9 rebounds to lead the regular season champions. Slaven Smiljanic provided 15 points in the winning effort. Jason Siggers responded with 22 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists for Boncourt in defeat.

Fribourg - Lugano Tigers 89-76
Fribourg stepped ahead in the semifinal series against Lugano. Oliver Vogt (209-C-80) nailed 28 points to propel the LNA defending champions to a comfortable win in the opening game. Pascal Perrier-David added 18 points in the victory. Josh Almanson responded with 22 points for the Tigers.


*****************************************************
  TAIWAN   


Stats Leaders
SBL Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1. Yang Ching-min, TB 19.0
2. Chang Chih-feng, Dacin 18.0
3. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 16.9
4. Hsu Chih-chan, BOT 16.2
5. Tien Lei, Dacin 15.8
6. Lin Chih-chieh, TB 15.5
7. Chen Ching-hwan 15.5
8. Ouyang Ching-heng, TM 15.1
9. Chien Chia-hong, PY 14.8
10. Chen Shun-hsiang, BOT 14.7
11. Cheng Jen-wei, KKL 14.1
12. Mario Boggan, TM 13.3
13. Ho Shou-cheng, TB 12.8
14. Wu Yong-jen, TM 12.5
15. James Mao, PY 12.5
Rebounds Per Game
1. Byron Allen, Dacin 10.0
2. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 9.0
3. Hsu Chih-chan, BOT 8.1
4. Tien Lei, Dacin 7.1
5. Lin Chih-chieh, TB 6.9
6. Wu Tai-hao, TB 6.9
7. Chen Ching-hwan, KKL 6.7
8. Cheng Jen-wei, KKL 6.5
9. Mario Boggan, TM 6.2
10. Ho Shou-cheng, TB 6.0
Assists Per Game
1. Wu Yong-jen, TM 4.3
2. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 4.1
3. Su Yi-chieh, Dacin 4.0
4. Chen Hsin-an, Yulon 4.0
5. Chen Shih-nian, TB 3.9
Steals Per Game
1. Lin Chih-long, BOT 2.0
2. Chang Chih-feng, Dacin 1.8
3. Wang Chih-chung, Dacin 1.8
4. Wu Yong-jen, TM 1.7
5. Chen Ching-hwan, KKL 1.7
Blocks Per Game
1. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 2.1
2. Wu Tai-hao, TB 1.8
3. Tien Lei, Dacin 1.6
4. Hsu Chih-chan, BOT 1.5
5. Cheng Jen-wei, KKL 1.3


Standings - SBL
SBL Standings
 1. Dacin 21-6 
 2. Yulon Luxgen 19-6 
 3. Taiwan Beer 17-9 
 4. Pure Youth 12-13 
 5. KKL 11-15 
 6. Taiw.Mobile 6-20 
 7. Bank of Taiw. 4-21 


*****************************************************
  UNITED KINGDOM   


Standings - EBL Conf.
EBL Standings
 1. Reading R. 18-0 
 2. Manchester M. 15-3 
 3. Leopards 12-6 
 4. Sheffield A. 10-8 
 5. Bristol A. 9-9 
 6. Coventry C. 8-10 
 7. Teeside M. 8-10 
 8. Derby T. 5-13 
 9. Cardiff C. 3-15 
 10. Taunton T. 2-16 


Eurobasket.com All-British EBL Division One Awards 2008-09 - by Eurobasket
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GillGill
Gill
PervanPervan
Pervan
OusleyOusley
Ousley
#e#6
Player of the Year: David Watts (206-F-83) of Reading
Guard of the Year: Stefan Gill (173-G-83) of Manchester
Forward of the Year: David Watts of Reading
Center of the Year: Tyler Ousley (206-C) of Sheffield
Bosman Player of the Year: Hrvoje Pervan (203-F-84) of Leopards
Import Player of the Year: Tyler Ousley of Sheffield
Domestic Player of the Year: David Watts of Reading
Defensive Player of the Year: David Watts of Reading
Coach of the Year: Dave Titmuss of Reading

1st Team
David Watts of Reading
Terrell Smith (191-G-85) of Reading
Stefan Gill of Manchester
Hrvoje Pervan of Leopards
Tyler Ousley of Sheffield

2nd Team
Ryan Lohfink (201-F/C-83) of Reading
Taner Adu (191-F-84) of Manchester
Brandon Kimbrough (188-G-84) of Manchester
Doug McLaughlin-Williams (203-F-85) of Sheffield
John Grazioli (201-F-87) of Bristol

Honorable Mention
Siman Stewart (198-F) of Coventry
Matt Morley (191-G) of Tees
Joseph Montgomery (186-G-79) of Derby
Stedroy Baker (172-G-69) of Derby
Tony Berry (205-C) of Cardiff

All-Domestic Players Team
David Watts of Reading
Stefan Gill of Manchester
Taner Adu of Manchester
Matt Morley of Tees
Siman Stewart of Coventry

All-Imports Team
Ryan Lohfink of Reading
Tyler Ousley of Sheffield
Doug McLaughlin-Williams of Sheffield
John Grazioli of Bristol
Terrell Smith of Reading


Standings - EBL2
EBL2 Standings
 1. Leeds C. 18-4 
 2. London Mets 17-5 
 3. Leicester W. 15-7 
 4. Aston A. 14-8 
 5. Kent C. 13-9 
 6. Northumbria 12-10 
 7. Plymouth II 10-12 
 8. NEWI N. 10-12 
 9. Plymouth MC 8-14 
 10. Colchester 8-14 
 11. Northampton 5-17 
 12. Birmingh.U. 2-10 


Rockets beat Magic in the final - by Eurobasket
Reading Rockets 89 Manchester Magic 52
With an awesome team performance, Rockets created English Basketball history with their 36th consecutive win in all National competitions by beating Manchester Magic in an epic final on Magic home court.
From 2-16 down in the opening quarter, Rockets never say die attitude shone through to record this historic and richly deserved prize.
David Tin Tin Watts started the revival by converting both free throws, after being fouled, before Ryan Lohfink (201-F/C-83, college: Bethel (KS)) fought hard inside for the offensive rebound off which he scored.
Terrell Smith (191-G-85, college: Limestone) and Rich Wellings (197-F-82) hit consecutive jump shots and a great Walid Mumuni steal and drive ended with him also scoring both penalty points moments before an arrow pass from Daniel McKay (186-G-89) gave Lohfink the easy lay up to draw matters to a close as the first quarter buzzer sounded with the score 16 points all.
Manchester began the second quarter with an 11-2 run with Smith hitting the first of his three pointers of the final before scoring from his own offensive boards.
Simon Kearney (193-G-87) hit a sweet jump shot to take Rockets to within two points of their opponents before they replied with a three.
This just seemed to spur Rockets on and Kearney made a three point play. MCI scored with a finger roll off a Rockets steal to tie the scores at 32 all.
From this point the Rockets never looked back and were never headed again as they went on an 8-0 charge.
A peach of a three from Watts, a super pass from McKay to Mumuni and a typical Kearney jump shot, was rounded off with Smith scoring high above the ring to take an offensive rebound off which he scored to finish a 38-16 run by the Rockets.
The magnificent comeback was qualified by one of Rockets best quarters against such excellent opposition, the whole season as they kept the Manchester side to just nine points while piling on 21 of their own.
Smith hit a pair of key threes with Wellings and Watts troubling the scorers with similar shots beyond the arc.
Mumuni worked tirelessly scoring himself but also giving a pair of assists to Lohfink who helped himself to four quick points.
Rockets defence had not only been outstanding but the Reading-side had only been called for four team fouls throughout.

Rockets finished the quarter 62-41 up and began the last period with another long Watts three pointer.
An outstanding long and high pass the length of the court was caught by Lohfink in mid air and finished with aplomb awesome and a 26 point lead.
Watts made a huge rejection before Mumuni sent a piercing pass for Lohfink to finish again.
The tempo was fervent, the atmosphere electric and the performance magnificent.
Magic just did not have any answers and despite having one four point play Magic were restricted to just 11 points in this final period compared to Rockets 27.
Mumuni had his best ever game against Magic finishing his personal points tally with a base line drive and a great tip-in.
Smith stole the ball and went coast to coast before finishing with a one hand slam dunk causing every Rockets supporter to stand and applaud.
With Rockets 30 points up coach Dave Titmuss gave the four juniors and 19-year-old Jason Sayers (203-F-88) the last three minutes.
And they then really enjoyed themselves taking the winning margin to 37 points (89-52) with Louis Sayers (196-F-92) and Abdul Ahmed scoring after being fouled and 17-year-old Adam Thoseby (196-F/G-91) adding a lay up from his own steal to his pair of points from the free throw line.
When Sayers wrapped up Rockets scoring, the buzzer sounded for the celebrations to begin.
This win brought the curtain down on an historic season and the National Cup, National Trophy and League title trophies already in the silverware cupboard, they are now accompanied by the Play-Off Championship trophy.
Top Scorers: Smith with 21 points and 9 rebounds, Mumuni 17+8, Watts 13+6 and Mckay 12+5.

Reading Rockets 76 Sheffield Arrows 55
Reading Rockets began their quest to make English Basketball history with a Championship Play Off semi final in Manchester on Saturday against fourth placed Sheffield Arrows.
Through Arrows scored first it was Rockets who kept their noses in front in a tight opening quarter.
Captain Rich Wellings hit an early three before a characteristic determined drive by Daniel McKay and a flamboyant reverse lay up by Terrell Smith laid the foundations for the win.
Arrows two big Americans caused problems throughout the game and scored 43 of Arrows 55 points by the time the final buzzer sounded.
However Rockets strength in depth, speed of transition and outstanding team work shone through, despite the four Rockets juniors not able to take their place in the team as the opposition in their RAF sponsored Junior quarter final demanded their game tipped off 75 minutes before the seniors, making it impossible for the young men to take to the floor in Manchester.
Nonetheless the Rockets under 18s under assistant head coach JP Campbell did the club proud by winning in Milton Keynes and moving onto their own Final Fours in two weeks time.
The intense opening quarter had seen Simon Kearney execute clinically off a Rockets fast break and David Tin Tin Watts and Terrell Smith rise high and determinedly to take a pair of key defensive boards as they led 20-19 into the first interval.
A Ryan Lohfink lay up and a McKay steal and drive saw Rockets five points up in the first minute of the second period and then a glorious defence piercing pass by Walid Mumuni gave Smith an easy score.
Rockets double teaming saw Arrows throw the ball out of court before a Mumuni steal and drive coupled with a Watts spin and jump shot saw Rockets with an 11-point lead.
Jason Sayers hit a superb three from the top of the key but Arrows finished the period well though Rockets went to the locker room 41-33 ahead.
Wellings hit an outstanding three to extend Rockets lead back to double digits which they held through the third period in which Smith took a charge, hit a three from well downtown and scored from the free throw line in an outstanding leadership role.
Rockets lead 58-46 going into the final quarter when the intensity of Rockets defence, buzzer beating shots from McKay and Smith kept Arrows to just nine points as Rockets scored 18 and justly took their place in the Play Off Championship Final with win number 35.
Top Scorers: Smith 28, McKay 12, Mumuni 10. Watts took a vital 13 rebounds.

Courtesy of GetReading


EBL Div.1 Stats Leaders
EBL Div.1 Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 McLaughlin, Sheff 23.2
2 Montgomery, Der 22.8
3 Pervan, Leopards 22.1
4 Ousley, Sheffield 21.9
5 Morley, Tees 19.5
Rebounds Per Game
1 Ousley, Sheffield 11.6
2 Berry, Cardiff 11.5
3 McLaughlin, Sheff 10.6
4 Attah, Tees 10.1
5 Stewart, Coventry 9.3
Assists Per Game
1 Baker, Derby 6.1
2 Olinger, Coventry 5.4
3 Oatman, Coventry 5.1
4 Bishop, Bristol 4.4
5 Streete, Bristol 4.3


*****************************************************
  USBA   


United States Basketball Association to hold a series of Open Houses - by USBA Media
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The United States Basketball Association is pleased to announce their season opening Open Houses. The Open Houses will take place at the home gymnasiums of each individual team.

Churches, civic groups and fans of each team are invited to come and get autographs, take pictures with the team and get to know the players who will be representing each individual city. A special invitation has been extended to the Boys and Girls Clubs as well as Big Brothers and Big Sisters organizations. We are also extending a very special invitation to foster children in each city.

The Open Houses will take place on Saturday May 2nd and Sunday May 3rd from 2-7 pm with refreshments such as hot dogs, soft drinks, chips and other snacks being provided free of charge by Coca-Cola.

USBA president Duane Jenkins says, This is an opportunity for us to get to know our fans and supporters in each city. We want our fans to be able to have autographs signed and quite simply, to be able to talk to the players on a more personal level.

The league will make season ticket packages available. The open house will mark the final week of availability of the 2009 USBA Season Ticket Extravaganza. This season ticket promotion is a special event for the fans and is sponsored by the advertisers and sponsors of the USBA. The league has set aside 1200 single season tickets for this promotion. This collaborated effort includes the USBA, the USBA Youth Outreach, Inc and many of the leagues partners, sponsors and advertisers, said Jenkins.

The league has set the price of $85.00 per season ticket and comes with admission to all ten home games and fifteen free single game tickets; this includes admittance to all home playoff games. As a bonus, fans receive priority seating, complimentary concessions, a free game day program and a 24x36 full color poster with the basketball team and dance team. (The total number of admittance per season ticket is 25, which breaks down to $3.30 per admittance)

According to the league, each season ticket holder will be automatically included in a raffle sponsored by the USBA Youth Outreach, Inc. Were very excited about this promotion. Not only do fans get a chance to see high quality basketball at affordable prices, but there is the chance to win a new car, a trip to see an NBA game and to go on a Disney World vacation.


The prize list is as follows:

* Grand Prize: 2009 Lincoln Mercury Grand Marquis LS
(one automobile and a $40.00 Quik Trip, BP or RaceTrac weekly gas card for one year, will be given away in each USBA team city, 10 total league wide),

* 2nd Prize: Disney World Family Vacation
(Family of four, rt airfare on Delta Airlines, transfers to and from the airport, daily Disney World Park passes, meals and lodging at a Disney World theme park hotel included, two given away in each USBA team city, 20 total league wide),

* 3rd prize: The NBA Extravaganza
( Trip for two to an NBA game, round trip airfare on Delta Airlines, overnight stay at Marriott Hotel, one day car rental from Enterprise, dinner for two at Outback Steak House and breakfast for two at International House of Pancakes, two given away in each USBA team city, 20 total league wide.)

* 4th Prize: The Trek Bicycle Explosion
(Six mens, six womens, six boys and six girls ten speed bicycles, 24 given away at each USBA team city, 240 total league wide)

* 5th Prize: The Outback Steak House Family Feast
(A $60.00 gift card, 25 given away in each USBA team city, 250 total league wide)

* 6th Prize: Russell Athletic Team Polo Shirts
(25 shirts will be given away in each USBA team city, 250 total league wide)

All drawings for this promotion will be held at halftime of the teams home season opener. As far as we know, this is the biggest and most extravagant season ticket promotion in the history of minor league sports. says Jenkins. Fans can visit our website at www.usbaball.com for rules and disclaimers about the raffle and the United States Basketball Association. We plan to begin our first season with a bang. All of our games will be geared toward top notched basketball competition, family fun and entertainment surrounded in a faith based environment, our goal is to offer each community a great experience proclaimed, Mr. Jenkins. For more information, call the USBA league office at (770) 899-6388 or go to www.usbaball.com.


2009 USBA Season Ticket Extravaganza Rules and Disclaimer:
Purchase of a season ticket to any 2009 USBA team necessary to be included in the raffle drawing. The USBA Youth Outreach, Inc., is the sponsor of this promotion. This promotion is open to all residents of Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, South Carolina, Florida, Virginia and North Carolina who purchase a season ticket during this promotion. Promotion ends May 30, 2009 at midnight Eastern Daylight Time. USBA employees, family member of USBA employees, team members, Season Ticket Extravaganza sponsors, their employees and their families are ineligible to participate in this promotion. Participants must be at least 18 years old to participate in this promotion. One entry in raffle per season ticket purchased. No other restrictions apply. No substitution of prizes. Prizes are not refundable or transferable. Prize winners are responsible for all taxes and /or gratuity associated with prizes won in this promotion. Odds of winning any prize in this promotion will be determined in direct relation of the number of season tickets sold during this promotion. (Example: 1200 season tickets sold per USBA team season, Grand Prize winning odds are 1200 to 1, 2nd prize winning odds are 600 to 1, 3rd Prize winning odds are 600 to 1, 4th Prize winning odds are 50 to 1, each, 5th prize winning odds are 48 to 1, 6th Prize winning odds are 48 to 1. The USBA has set aside 1200 season tickets per USBA team city to be sold, a total 12,000 league wide. Odds of winning a prize in this promotion are derived on a per city basis only. If the same individual purchases two season tickets for the 2009 basketball season and before May 3, 2009 the odds will increase to give the ticket holder double the chance of winning a prize. This promotion is a USBA Youth Outreach sponsored event. The USBA Youth Outreach, Inc., is a 501(c)(3) not for Profit Company. Single ticket purchases are not included in this promotion. 2nd and 3rd Prizewinners must make travel reservation through the USBA. Travel blackout periods may effect certain travel dates. All NBA games must be east of the Mississippi River and in the Continental United States. Grand prizewinners have a choice of color. There is no time limit for any of the travel prizes, gift card or any other prize in this promotion. Promotion is void where prohibited by law.
--30

Media contact information:

Chris Munson: Director of CommunicationsUnited States Basketball Association
904-619-6513 or chris.munson8@gmail.com


*****************************************************
  VENEZUELA   


Guaros de Lara changes things around, brings in Jason Edwin and Albert White - by Francisco Vega
Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Despites the fact that they're enjoying their best regular season run ever, having won 20 of their 26 games while earning records of 11-1 at home and 9-5 on the road, Guaros de Lara decided to take it up a notch and bring in bigger players with a more defensive approach towards the latter part of the season, by signing Jason Edwin (196-G/F-81) and Albert White (197-G/F-77), who've already taken their first practice session at Domo Bolivariano.

Edwin, a member of the Virgin Islands's Senior NT, comes in to replace injured Puerto Rican Roberto Nieves (194-G-82), who flew back home and is expected to join Grises de Humacao in a few days. Edwin is a shooting guard and small forward who recently played for Pioneros de Quintana Roo in Mexico's LNBP, in which he shared time with one of his new teammates, Torraye Braggs (203-F/C-76). He also played for Marinos de Anzoategui last season in a couple of regular season matches and the playoffs.

Meanwhile, White comes back after playing 18 games and averaging 18.8 points for Guaros in 2008, then being part of a disappointing effort that was not enough for Guaros to make it to the playoffs, cutting a three-year streak. He'll replace Moses Marbury (191-G-80), who despites averaging 17.6 points per match in 19 games, will not stay with the team as they thought it was better to increase the size and bring in more defensive players.


Standings - LPB
LPB Standings
 1. Marinos 20-6 
 2. Guaros 20-6 
 3. Cocodrilos 17-9 
 4. Trotamundos 15-11 
 5. Guaiqueries 14-12 
 6. Gaiteros 13-13 
 7. La Guaira BBC 11-15 
 8. Gigantes 8-18 
 9. Toros 8-18 
 10. Panteras 4-22 


LPB 2009 - Week 9 (Tuesday): Guaros ties Marinos at the top, Guaiqueries win sixth in a row - by Francisco Vega

Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Guaros de Lara reached the top of the LPB 2009 standings and catched up with Marinos de Anzoategui, by combining their victory at home against Panteras de Miranda with an astonishing defeat of Marinos as hosts against Toros de Aragua. Meanwhile, Guaiqueries won their sixth straight game by taking down Cocodrilos de Caracas at home.

Guaros de Lara 94 - Panteras de Miranda 85
Domo Bolivariano - Barquisimeto, Lara

Quarter by quarter
GUA: 23-25-25-21= 94
PAN: 16-25-16-27= 85

Scorers
GUA: Moses Marbury (191-G-80) 26 points, Pablo Machado (207-C-77) 16 points and 7 rebounds, Leonardo Berroteran (192-F/G-81) 13 points, Torraye Braggs (203-F/C-76) 10 points and 7 rebounds, Heissler Guillent (191-G-86) 9 points and 5 steals, Sonys Reyes (181-G-86) 6 points, Johan Pinero (183-G-76) 6 points, Francisco Centeno (201-G/F-85) 2 points, Graddy Osorio (193-F-87) 2 points, Kervin Bracho (204-F/C-78) 2 points, Luis Hurtado (204-F-86) 2 points

PAN: Lavor Postell (197-F/G-78) 16 points, Brian Latham (184-G-83) 15 points, Roque Osorio (206-C-76) 10 points, Richard Mejias (187-G-78) 10 points, Deivis Ananguren (192-F-85) 8 points, Eduardo Torres (195-F-81) 7 points, Devougn Lamont (208-F-84) 6 points, Michael Flores (192-G-85) 5 points, Derwin Ramirez (191-F-82) 4 points, TomJim Colina (186-G-77) 4 points, Darwin Jaramillo (192-F-86) 0 points

Toros de Aragua 81 - Marinos de Anzoategui 72
Luis Ramos Arena - Puerto La Cruz, Anzoategui

Quarter by quarter
MAR: 24-18-15-15= 72
TOR: 17-18-28-18= 81

Scorers
TOR: Alejandro Flores (202-F-81) 23 points and 6 rebounds, Ernesto Mijares (190-G-76) 17 points and 7 rebounds, Taliek Brown (186-G-82) 13 points, Fred Hooks (198-F-82) 10 points, Luis Julio (199-F-80) 10 points, Amber Marin (208-C-81) 4 points, Ruben Pachano (185-G-76) 4 points, Rodrigo Rodriguez (198-F-80) 0 points, Jesus Urbina (201-F-84) 0 points, Peter Kvietek (203-C-77) 0 points, Jean Carlos Espinoza (190-G/F-74) 0 points, Fernando Lucena (182-G-86) 0 points

MAR: Michael Gale (193-G-82) 18 points and 7 steals, Diego Guevara (184-G-77) 15 points and 7 assists, Gregory Vargas (182-G-86) 12 points, Hernan Salcedo (198-F-80) 9 points and 6 assists, Uka Agbai (203-F-81) 7 points and 11 rebounds, Hatila Passos (212-C-86) 6 points and 8 rebounds, David Cedeno (190-G-83) 5 points, Jhon Romero (199-F-85) 0 points, Henry Caten (201-F-80) 0 points, Adan Reyes (183-G-83) 0 points, Juan Fontena (196-F-87) 0 points, Dennison Rodriguez (202-F-89) 0 points


Guaiqueries de Margarita 79 - Cocodrilos de Caracas 74
Ciudad de La Asuncion Arena - La Asuncion, Margarita

Quarter by quarter
GUAI: 13-19-20-27= 79
COC: 17-15-17-25= 74

Scorers
GUAI: Kelvin Pena (193-G-81) 24 points, Rogers Washington (198-F-77) 18 points and 7 rebounds, Chris Jackson (208-C-81) 14 points and 15 rebounds, Carlos Cedeno (193-G/F-85) 14 points, Cesar Silva (187-G/F-81) 4 points, Dennis D'Adezzio (191-G-81) 3 points, Edgar Arteaga (198-F-76) 2 points, Heberth Bayona (210-C-78) 0 points, Jorge Diaz (195-F-77) 0 points, Jackson Zapata (198-F-85) 0 points, Jorge Rondon (193-G/F-90) 0 points, Douglas Chiquito (193-G-86) 0 points

COC: Carl Elliott (193-G-83) 18 points and 5 steals, Bryant Smith (196-G/F-77) 15 points, Juan Herrera (197-F-81) 12 points, Edner Elisma (205-F/C-75) 10 points and 7 rebounds, Jesus Centeno (190-G-85) 10 points, Luis Bethelmy (200-C-86) 7 points and 12 rebounds, Windi Graterol (204-C-86) 2 points, Derson Santos (197-F-84) 0 points, Juan Carlos Rodriguez (193-G-78) 0 points, Wladimir Saavedra (200-F-77) 0 points, Henry Paez (184-G-70) 0 points, Kenji Urdaneta (188-G-85) 0 points



LPB 2009 - Week 9 (Wednesday): Guaros wins fourth straight, La Guaira and Cocodrilos with hard hits - by Francisco Vega

Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Guaros de Lara reached the top of the LPB 2009 standings and catched up with Marinos de Anzoategui, by combining their victory at home against Panteras de Miranda with an astonishing defeat of Marinos as hosts against Toros de Aragua. Meanwhile, Guaiqueries won their sixth straight game by taking down Cocodrilos de Caracas at home.

Guaros de Lara 92 - Panteras de Miranda 82
Domo Bolivariano - Barquisimeto, Lara

Quarter by quarter
GUA: 23-25-25-21= 92
PAN: 16-25-16-27= 82

Scorers
GUA: Francisco Centeno (201-G/F-85) 27 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists, Heissler Guillent (191-G-86) 18 points, Pablo Machado (207-C-77) 16 points and 6 rebounds, Kervis Ramirez (190-G-78) 14 points and 5 steals, Torraye Braggs (203-F/C-76) 8 points, Leonardo Berroteran (192-F/G-81) 5 points, Kervin Bracho (204-F/C-78) 4 points, Sonys Reyes (181-G-86) 0 points, Johan Pinero (183-G-76) 0 points, Graddy Osorio (193-F-87) 0 points, Luis Hurtado (204-F-86) 0 points

PAN: Devougn Lamont (208-F-84) 21 points, Deivis Ananguren (192-F-85) 15 points, Eduardo Torres (195-F-81) 11 points, Blake Walker (196-G/F-82) 8 points, Derwin Ramirez (191-F-82) 8 points, Brian Latham (184-G-83) 6 points, Roque Osorio (206-C-76) 5 points and 4 blocks, Michael Flores (192-G-85) 4 points, Richard Mejias (187-G-78) 2 points, TomJim Colina (186-G-77) 2 points, Darwin Jaramillo (192-F-86) 0 points, Gustavo Montoya (197-F-86) 0 points

Marinos de Anzoategui 81 - Toros de Aragua 62
Luis Ramos Arena - Puerto La Cruz, Anzoategui

Quarter by quarter
MAR: 27-19-12-23= 81
TOR: 17-10-20-15= 62

Scorers
TOR: Taliek Brown (186-G-82) 13 points and 5 assists, Alejandro Flores (202-F-81) 11 points and 9 rebounds, Ernesto Mijares (190-G-76) 11 points, Fred Hooks (198-F-82) 11 points, Rodrigo Rodriguez (198-F-80) 7 points, Jean Carlos Espinoza (190-G/F-74) 3 points, Amber Marin (208-C-81) 2 points, Ruben Pachano (185-G-76) 2 points, Fernando Lucena (182-G-86) 2 points, Luis Julio (199-F-80) 0 points, Jesus Urbina (201-F-84) 0 points, Peter Kvietek (203-C-77) 0 points

MAR: Hatila Passos (212-C-86) 16 points and 8 rebounds, Diego Guevara (184-G-77) 15 points and 8 assists, Gregory Vargas (182-G-86) 14 points and 6 assists, Jhon Romero (199-F-85) 11 points and 7 rebounds, Uka Agbai (203-F-81) 10 points, Hernan Salcedo (198-F-80) 9 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, Luis Sanchez (186-G-88) 3 points, Dennison Rodriguez (202-F-89) 2 points, Juan Fontena (196-F-87) 1 point, Ruben Contreras (196-F-87) 0 points, Henry Caten (201-F-80) 0 points, Adan Reyes (183-G-83) 0 points


Cocodrilos de Caracas 90 - Guaiqueries de Margarita 86
Ciudad de La Asuncion Arena - La Asuncion, Margarita

Quarter by quarter
Unavailable

Scorers
GUAI: Carlos Cedeno (193-G/F-85) 30 points, Chris Jackson (208-C-81) 17 points, Kelvin Pena (193-G-81) 14 points

COC: Carl Elliott (193-G-83) 36 points and 5 steals, Juan Herrera (197-F-81) 22 points, Luis Bethelmy (200-C-86) 15 points


Trotamundos de Carabobo 82 - Gigantes de Guayana 79
Hermanas Gonzalez Arena - Puerto Ordaz, Bolivar

Quarter by quarter
GIG: 16-12-24-27= 79
TRO: 13-23-27-19= 82

Scorers
TRO: Jose Vargas (196-G/F-82) 35 points, Cedric Moodie (187-G-78) 14 points, Richard Lugo (209-C-73) 10 points, Leonardo Cappare (186-G-80) 6 points, Manuel Berroteran (185-G-80) 5 points and 6 assists, Mark Bortz (208-F/C-82) 5 points, Gustavo Barrera (194-G-85) 4 points and 6 assists, Miguel Marriaga (206-C-84) 3 points and 8 rebounds, Pedro Brito (202-F/C-82) 0 points, Yorvis Umbria (203-F-85) 0 points

GIG: Levi Stukes (188-G-84) 22 points, 7 rebounds and 6 steals, Clarence Matthews (201-F-83) 19 points and 7 rebounds, Ludwing Irazabal (201-C/F-73) 16 points, Kevin Palacios (203-F/C-84) 10 points and 5 rebounds, Daniel Macuare (190-F-84) 4 points, Douglas Rodriguez (185-G-79) 3 points, Jose Ramos (198-F-71) 2 points, Jorge Leon (186-G-79) 2 points, Nestor Moran (178-G-87) 1 points, Omar Mejias (175-G-80) 0 points, Pedro Montano (201-F-84) 0 points


La Guaira BBC 76 - Gaiteros del Zulia 73
Jose Maria Vargas Arena - La Guaira, Vargas

Quarter by quarter
LG: 13-19-20-27= 76
GAI: 17-15-17-25= 73

Scorers
LG: Mike Campbell (197-G/F-75) 24 points, Andres Sandoval (193-G-83) 16 points, Edgar Lugo (189-G-82) 9 points, Carlos Morris (194-G-75) 8 points, Elvis Burguillos (194-G/F-82) 6 points, Jose Yovera (194-G/F-75) 4 points, Jose Martinez (196-F-82) 3 points, James Reaves (203-F-82) 2 points and 6 rebounds, Victor Gonzalez (200-F-69) 2 points, Antonio Torcatt (182-G-76) 2 points, Tomas Aguilera (198-F-77) 0 points, Victor Luces (188-G-77) 0 points

GAI: Ruben Nembhard (191-G-72) 31 points, Alejandro Barrios (205-C-79) 16 points, Rafael Guevara (194-F-79) 11 points and 5 assists, Art Long (206-F/C-73) 8 points and 7 rebounds, Francisco Sanabria (190-G-77) 3 points, Dominick Mejia (196-G-83) 2 points, Jose Juan Bravo (200-C-80) 2 points, Jose Lopez (188-F) 0 points, Cesar Olivo (186-G-83) 0 points, Pedro Cubillan (187-G-82) 0 points, Francisco Hernandez (191-F-81) 0 points, Juan Rivas (193-G-81) 0 points



Greivis Vasquez announced he's testing the waters in NBA Draft - by Francisco Vega
Barquisimeto, Venezuela.- Venezuelan guard Greivis Vasquez (198-G-87) announced that he'll be 'testing the waters' of the NBA Draft, after completing a successful junior year as the star of the NCAA's Division I team, Maryland Terrapins.

Vasquez, who played for Venezuela's Senior NT in the 2007 FIBA Americas Olympic Games Qualy Tournament of Las Vegas, United States, said that he thought it was the best time to do it, while being a junior, but that he'll not hire and agent, so that he can test his value in the market but still be able to come back and play his senior year in College Park.

He averaged 17.5 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists per match in 33 games last season, including a triple double performance against North Carolina with 35 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists. Maryland made it to the second round of the National Tournament against all odds from the experts and after dazzling the Atlantic Coast Conference with their way to approach the game.

Vasquez will have till June 15 to withdraw his name from the draft. If he plays in the NBA, he'd become the third Venezuelan to do so, after Carl Herrera (206-C-66) and Oscar Torres (195-F/G-76). Herrera won two NBA championships as a member of the Houston Rockets in 1994 and 1995.


Greivis Vasquez to find out about himself - by Carlos Santander
Venezuelan guard Greivis Vasquez has decided to present his name for the NBA Draft, but isnt going to hire an agent to keep open the option of returning to Maryland. Greivis Vasquez averaged 17.5 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists for Maryland this past season. Maryland ended with an 89-70 loss to Memphis in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. So far Vasquez has to consider and analyze his strength and weaknesses to then take the final decision.
Greivis Vasquez strength: Go-to scoring mentality, transition play, ability to create own shot, competitiveness, confidence, mental toughness, high level productivity, level of competition, ability to create for others, court vision, excellent wingspan, size for position, average rebounder, 3-point range, free throw shooting.
Greivis Vasquez weaknesses: Efficiency, Not a true point guard, out of control at times, shot-selection, ability to defend position at next level, ability to fight through screens, commitment to playing defense, lateral quickness, physical toughness, ability to finish through contact, average athleticism, inconsistent shooter, low shooting percentages.




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Women News

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  AUSTRALIA - Women  


Lightning sign duo, Valk back - by Eurobasket News
The NBL may be floundering but it's full steam ahead for the WNBL's Adelaide Lightning with two new signings and five key re-signings.

Coach Vicky Valk has been reappointed for a further 12 months and championship trio Jessica Foley (182-G-83, college: Duke), Angela Marino (166-G-86) and Rebecca Duke (183-F-87) all will return for 2009-10.

Mia Newley (181-F-86), who returned to Adelaide from the AIS to play last season, also has again put pen to paper to stay in Lightning navy.

The initial big signing coup is 183cm New Zealand Olympian Lisa Wallbutton (183-F-86) who will take a coveted import role as a power forward.

West Adelaide off-guard Nikki Martin, who after graduating from the AIS spent 2008-09 with Sydney Flames, also has joined the newlook roster.

Gone but not forgotten are 2007-08 AllStar and championship import Tracy Gahan who will pursue European opportunities.

With young centre Cayla Francis already under contract, the first team Valk has put together now has seven roster spots taken and the club also is talking with two overseas players.

Wallbutton, 23, is playing for Albury in the SEABL and was scouted there last week by Valk when the Kiwi star's Lady Bandits' team hosted Francis' Ballarat outfit.

'She has a big, mobile body and she played well against Cayla,' Valk said.

Wallbutton averaged 10.4 points at 63 per cent and five rebounds a game for the Tall Ferns at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

In March she made history as the first player from Albury to be named the SEABL Player of the Month, opening with 16 points, eight rebounds, two assists and a block in a 66-69 loss in Brisbane.

Having gauged the competition level from there, Wallbutton had 22 points, 16 boards, four assists and two steals against Bendigo, then 23, 12, one and one respectively in an 83-66 victory over Nunawading Spectres. She backed up the next day at Frankston with a 24-point, 17-rebound double.

'We don't know yet what (captain) Sam (Woosnam) is going to do so Lisa will be a big gain for us,' Valk said. 'Nikki obviously has been playing well for West, is a really good defender and didn't play much at Sydney last year. She wants to work hard and will do well here.'

Courtesy of www.news.com.au


Rebecca Campigli headed to Wyoming - by Eurobasket News
2008/09 Dandenong Rangers guard Rebecca Campigli (177-G-90) has signed a letter of intent with the University of Wyoming.

On Monday Cowgirl head basketball coach Joe Legerski today one addition to this year's recruiting class with the signing of Campigli to attend the university beginning in the fall of 2009.

'Rebecca Campigli is the first true point guard that we've had at Wyoming,' said Legerski. 'She likes to distribute the basketball and push the ball in transition, while being an outside shooting threat. She completes this recruiting class as she joins Chaundra Sewell and Sara Wilson as future Cowgirls.'

The 18-year-old was a development player with the Dandenong Rangers for two years. She was a part of the Under 20 Victorian team that won the 2008 Australia National Championship. Rebecca Campigli also was a member of the Australian Schoolgirls team in 2007.

Courtesy of www.wyomingathletics.cstv.com


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  BELGIUM - Women  


Dexia surge ahead in Final - by Eurobasket News
Dexia - Waregem 62:59

Dexia Namur drew first blood in the final series against Waregem. Dexia celebrated a narrow home win in Game 1. Dexia entered the game without Krystyna Szymanska-Lara (173-G-69) and got to a slow start. The teams traded baskets throughout the opening minutes before Waregem took off. They capped the first term on a 9:4 run to accumulate a 5-point lead. The visitors stayed in front in the second period. Dexia cut the distance to 4 points but could get no closer. The halftime scoreboard read 33:28 for Waregem as they looked for upset. However the third stanza brought some relief for Dexia fans. Pauline Akonga Nsimbo (187-F/C-82, agency: LBM Management) finally found the rhythm as she fueled a comeback effort from the hosts. Dexia narrowed the distance and then stepped in charge taking a 43:40 advantage into the fourth quarter. Dexia looked confident in the final quarter as they kept Waregem at bay. The dying minutes of the encounter were tense though as the visitors stayed within striking distance but failed to perform the trick. Pauline Akonga Nsimbo paced Dexia to the victory with 16 points and 10 boards. Olesya Malashenko (188-F-91, agency: LBM Management) added 14 points and 8 boards, while Romina Ciappina (180-F/G-88) secured 11 points in the winning case. Nele Deyaert (186-F-79) responded with game-high 25 points. Lieselot Malfait (191-C-87, college: IPFW) had 11 points in defeat. Game 2 is scheduled for April 28.

Dexia: Pauline Akonga Nsimbo 16+10 boards, Olesya Malashenko 14, Romina Ciappina 11
Waregem: Nele Deyaert 25, Lieselot Malfait 11


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  BOSNIA - Women  


Standings - Women
D1 Standings
 1. Zeljeznicar 20-0 
 2. Celik 14-6 
 3. Brotnjo 94 13-7 
 4. Jedinstvo 13-7 
 5. Trebinje 12-7 
 6. Sloboda 11-8 
 7. Banovici 10-10 
 8. Borac-Mladost 7-12 
 9. Livno 5-14 
 10. Zrinjski 1-17 
 11. Bugojno 1-19 


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  BULGARIA - Women  


Standings - Women
A1 Standings
First Four
 1. Lukoil 4-2 
 2. Montana 2003 3-3 
 3. Dunav 3-3 
 4. Minor 2-4 
Second Five
 1. Beroe 2007 6-0 
 2. Rilski Sportist 5-2 
 3. Slavia 4-3 
 4. Tony 7 1-5 
 5. NSA 0-6 


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  CROATIA - Women  


Gospic CO and Jolly JBS advance to play-off final - by Eurobasket News
As it was expected, Gospic CO and Jolly JBS advanced to play-off final in Croatian championship. Both teams ended the semifinal series with perfect 2-0.

In the second game, which was played last night, the regular season champion cruised past Studenac Omis on the road 85-56. After opening ten minutes (14-33) it was clear that Studenac won't have any chance in this match. Carla Thomas (191-F/C-85, agency: LBM Management, college: Vanderbilt) and Jelena Ivezic (184-G-84) led the winners in scoring with 16 points each. Martina Zubak (191-C-83) followed them with 13. In the loosing squad Josipa Bura (185-C-85) nailed 13 pts.

The defending champion Jolly JBS also celebrated on the road in the second semifinal game, but against Medvescak 64-52. Interesting is that the hosts succeeded to score just 3 points in the first quarter. Later they improved, but experienced guests were strong enough to keep their lead. Constance Jinks (170-G-81, college: UNLV) once again led Jolly JBS nailing 23 points. Actually, she was the only player in the team from Sibenik with double-digits in scoring. On the other side, Dea Klein-Sumanovac (182-G/F-81) and Mirna Mazic (188-F-85, college: Richmond) contributed with 11 pts each in loss.

First game of the big final is scheduled for April 26th. Gospic CO will be the host.


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  DENMARK - Women  


Aabyhoj advanced to the Unexpected Final - by Eurobasket News
The 2008/2009 Final in Denmark will be the most unexpected one, however definitely will bring the passion and excitement.
First upset came from SISU that lost to Amager in the decisive game. The latter became the first Dameligaen finalist after they defeated SISU in the third game of the semifinal series. Amager needed to overcome a slow start to deliver a victorious 73:70 result at the end.
Last night Horsholm, being the second team after the Regular Season lost to Aabyhoj that will play now in the Final. Aabyhoj won the opener 54:52, however Horsholm tied the series after 61:57 in Game 2. The decisive third game brought 53:41 for Aabyhoj that advanced to the Finals even though the team finished fourth in the Regular Season. Horsholm opened the game with 17:13 in the first frame, but could not stay on track in the rest of the clash. Aabyhoj replied with 18-10 in the second period to take 31:27 advantage at the halftime. The second half was very emotional and two teams paid more attention to defense. Aabyhoj won the third period 13-9 and escaped 9-5 victory in the last quarter. Jessica Lonon (186-F-81, college: E.Tenn.St.) led the winners with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Emilie Hesseldal (185-F/C-90), Ida Tryggedsson (174-G-90) and Anne Deleuran Kristensen produced 8 points each in a win. Anne Thorius (179-G-77, college: Michigan) responded with 17 points in the losing effort.


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  GREECE - Women  


Detroit Shock sign Kristin Haynie (Paleo Faliro Pireus, Greece A1) - by Eurobasket News
The Detroit Shock are bringing back a homestate star.

Kristin Haynie (5'9''-G-83, college: Michigan St.) signed with the Shock on Wednesday, adding depth on the perimeter for the WNBA champions.

The former Michigan State guard averaged 2.8 points and 2.5 assists last season for the Atlanta Dream after playing for the Sacramento Monarchs for three years. She has averaged 3.5 points and two assists in her career.

She led the Spartans to the 2005 NCAA final, then Sacramento drafted her with the ninth overall pick in the WNBA draft.

Haynie is No. 1 in Michigan State's record books with 574 assists and 346 points. The native of Mason became the fourth player in Big Ten history with at least 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists and 300 steals in a career.

Courtesy of www.examiner.com


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  HUNGARY - Women  


Big final: Szeged crushes MKB Euroleasing for 1-1 - by Eurobasket News
MKB Euroleasing - Szeged 66-63

Szeged made it in the second game of the big final. Powerful MKB Euroleasing ended regular season with almost perfect 21-1 record, but it seems that Szeged will be much dangerous rival than anyone expected. They already knocked out MiZo and now they tied the score in the play of final against the defending champion and Euroleague semifinalist MKB. Emoke Furesz (180-G-77) demonstrated impressive performance last night netting 25 points. Olena Zherzherunova (191-F-78, agency: LBM Management) was second scorer of the team with 11 pts. The Ukrainian star also grabbed 10 rebounds beside that. All other players in Szeged had less than 10. On the other side, MKB Euroleasing got the most from Amber Holt (183-G/F-85, college: Middle Tenn.St.), 18 points and 9 rebounds. Dora Horti (195-C-87) had 14 and Katalin Honti (178-G-87) contributed with 12 pts. Visitors made 28-31 lead in the first half, but Szeged responded after the breather for 45-43 turn. At the end Emoke Furesz and her teammates were concentrated unexpectedly crushing MKB. Third game is scheduled for tomorrow and MKB Euroleasing will be the host.

In play-out games MiZo Pecs was better than Foton 59-51. In the second match of the day ZTE grabbed 68-65 road win against BSE. Next play-out game will be played tomorrow between Szolnoki and Vasas-Csata.


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  ITALY - Women  


Faenza and Umana Reyer make surprises in Serie A semifinals (game 1) - by Eurobasket News
Taranto - Faenza 65-67
Faenza shocked the regular season champion in the first game of the play-off semifinals registering 67-65 road win. Milka Bjelica (193-F-81) paced her team to victory collecting 24 points and 6 rebounds. Maja Erkic also had very important role netting 21 pts. Cras Taranto got 17 points and 9 boards from Megan Mahoney, while Suzy Batkovic stopped on 14 pts.

Familia Schio - Umana Reyer 44-48
The team from Venezia grabbed nice 48-44 road win taking 1-0 lead in Serie A semifinals. Visitors had just one player with double-digits in scoring and it was Simona Ballardini (183-F-81) - 12 pts. The loosing squad got 10 pts from Kathrin Ress.


Play-out
Livorno - Ribera 60-47
Katryna Gaither (191-C-75, agency: LBM Management) stepped up for Livorno in this game registering double-double, 17 pts and 19 rebounds. Bernardetta Bagnara was second scorer of the team with 10 pts. Jami Montagnino answered with 15 pts in defeat. Livorno - Ribero 1-0.


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  JORDAN - Women  


First Saudi Women team visit Jordan - by Murad Masri
Jordan host this week the first ever Saudi women basketball team that called it self jeddah women team, and the Saudi team get the chance to play two games against AL-Riyadi aramex and Shabab al-ordon.
In first game AL-Riyadi win over the Saudi team (83-16) but even they also lost to shabab (29-49) but the jeddah team show some improve than the first game.
jeddah women team get also the chance to visit some of interesting places in Jordan like Petra and old jerash, and they have meeting with national federation to discuss the chances to come more to Jordan.
the team that only play one game in uae before those two game had the players: maale al-abdali, bothena albeti, jod al-najawe, laila makes, batol barom, noor zahir, shatha bakhsh, hala zahid, tamara sadeq, fareeda al-ahmadi, sarah al-ma3ena.


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  LIBERIA - Women  


D1 Standings
D1 Standings
 1. K-Deltas 8-0 
 2. Comm. 6-2 
 3. Queens 5-3 
 4. Phoenix 4-3 
 5. Survivors 4-3 
 6. Timberwol. 3-5 
 7. Desert L. 2-5 
 8. R.A.S. 2-5 
 9. Supreme S. 0-8 


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  LITHUANIA - Women  


TEO is closing on title - by Eurobasket News
Arvi - TEO 61:68

TEO Vilnius stepped closer to defending their LMKL title as they earned the second straight win in the final series. Yesterday TEO overcame Arvi on the road to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five contest. Arvi now need to brace up for the third game on the road to stay alive in the fight for the championship.
Arvi were quick off the dressing room as they took a 6:0 lead into the game. The hosts dominated the opening frame and deservedly earned a 16:14 lead heading into the second stanza. Crystal Langhorne (188-F/C-86, college: Maryland) and Daina Staugaitiene (182-G-80, college: Liberty) however shot the visitors in front early in the second term. Daina Staugaitiene drained back-to-back trebles late in the first half to give the visitors a 34:24 lead. Bimbaite then sealed the outcome at 36:24. Aurime Rinkeviciute (180-F/G-90) and Daina Staugaitiene fired twice from downtown early in the third frame to keep the hosts at bay. Arvi gradually managed to narrow the margin as they trailed by 5 points with under two minute remaining in the quarter. TEO however did not allow the home team to get any closer and entered the fourth term ahead by 6 points 53:47. Shchypakina and Giedre Paugaite (192-C-90) gave Arvi hope as they clipped the distance to only two points midway through the fourth period. Sauliute then drew things level as the tension reached its maximum. Crystal Langhorne stepped up for TEO at the moment notching four extra important points. Daina Staugaitiene added two from the stripe and then Crystal Langhorne and Rima Valentiene (170-G-78) followed with 5 points in a row to seal the deal.
Crystal Langhorne came up with 20 points and 13 boards for TEO. Daina Staugaitiene had 16 points, while Streimkyte added 12 points and 9 boards for the winners. Giedre Paugaite responded with 17 points and 8 rebounds for Arvi. Vaida Pacauskiene (176-G-79) knocked down 12 points in the loss.

TEO: Crystal Langhorne 20+13 boards, Daina Staugaitiene 16, Jurgita Streimikyte (191-F-72) 12
Arvi: Giedre Paugaite 17, Vaida Pacauskiene 12


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  LUXEMBOURG - Women  


Standings - Women
Diekirch Standings
Group A
 1. Musel Pikes 21-6 
 2. Etzella 19-8 
 3. T71 Dudelange 18-9 
 4. Residence 15-12 
 5. Basket Esch 15-12 
 6. AB Contern 14-13 
Group B
 1. Amicale 12-11 
 2. Racing 7-16 
 3. Grengewald 6-17 
 4. Black Frogs 0-23 


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  NCAA1 - Women  


Rebecca Campigli headed to Wyoming - by Eurobasket News
2008/09 Dandenong Rangers guard Rebecca Campigli (177-G-90) has signed a letter of intent with the University of Wyoming.

On Monday Cowgirl head basketball coach Joe Legerski today one addition to this year's recruiting class with the signing of Campigli to attend the university beginning in the fall of 2009.

'Rebecca Campigli is the first true point guard that we've had at Wyoming,' said Legerski. 'She likes to distribute the basketball and push the ball in transition, while being an outside shooting threat. She completes this recruiting class as she joins Chaundra Sewell and Sara Wilson as future Cowgirls.'

The 18-year-old was a development player with the Dandenong Rangers for two years. She was a part of the Under 20 Victorian team that won the 2008 Australia National Championship. Rebecca Campigli also was a member of the Australian Schoolgirls team in 2007.

Courtesy of www.wyomingathletics.cstv.com


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  POLAND - Women  


Lotos PKO BP Gdynia - two wins to the glory - by Maciej Schwarz
Gdynia's giant Lotos PKO BP Gdynia will play AZS PWSZ Gorzow tonight (23.04) and tommorow (24.04) on away games. The two wins for lotos means 10th Polish Chamion title in the club's history. However, Gorzow will do everything to get two victories at home and go back to Gdynia for next stage.
The rest of games are scheduled:
sunday 26.04. (Gdynia) - 13.15*
Tuesday 28.04 (Gorzow) - 18.00*
Thursday 30.04 (Gdynia) - 18.00 *
* - if necessary


PLKK Round: 3 (Finals) - by Eurobasket News
AZS Gorzow - Lotos PKO BP 74-81
Lotos PKO BP won over AZS Gorzow 81:74 to take 3-0 in the Final series. Ivana Matovic (197-C-83) top-scored for the winners with 18 points and Snytsina Ekaterina posted 15. Anosike Nicky ended up with 21 points in defeat, while Taylor Lindsay netted 19.


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  ROMANIA - Women  


Sf.Gheorghe smash Alexandria away from home - by Eurobasket News
The first Semifinal games bring the wins for Targoviste and Sf.Gheorghe. The Winner of the Regular Season easily beat Satu Mare at home, while Sf.Gheorghe surprised Alexandria away from home.
Municipal MCM Targoviste overcame CSM Satu Mare 95:50 to take 1-0 in the series. The hosts opened the game with 21:12 in the opening quarter and never looked behind after. The second period was a nightmare for the guests that were smashed 28-4. In the second half Municipal MCM Targoviste controlled the court and reached the first win. Chrissy Givens (180-G-85, agency: LBM Management, college: Middle Tenn.St.) top-scored for the winners with 23 points and 11 rebounds. Boriga - Brosovszky finished the night with 15 points and Monique Coker (188-F-82, college: ODU) collected 14 points and 10 rebounds. Claudia Pop (184-F-89, agency: LBM Management) delivered 22 points in the losing effort.
CSS LMK Sfantu Gheorghe proved the ambitions of the season surprising BC Teleorman Alexandria 100:71. Even though the third team of the Regular Season played away from home they dominated the entire game. CSS LMK Sfantu Gheorghe started with 26:11 and improved to 57:32 at the halftime. With another 4-point advantage in the second half the guests grabbed the first victory. Ildiko Vass (178-G-78) was unstoppable with 34 points for the winners and Kajdacsi collected 16 points and 11 boards. Bianca Vescan (186-C-78) chipped in 16 points in the losing effort.


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  SLOVAKIA - Women  


Maxima Broker edge MBK Ruzomberok again - by Eurobasket News
MBK Ruzomberok - Maxima Broker 46:59

Maxima Broker put themselves just whisker away from the Extraliga title as they celebrated the win in the second game of the finals. This time Broker tamed their archrivals MBK Ruzomberok on the road.
Katarina Hrickova (180-F-80) opened the proceedings with a three-pointer to set Maxima Broker in the drivers seat. But Simona Podesvova (186-F-83) and Adriana Gresnerova (179-F-86) quickly stole the advantage from the visitors as Ruzomberok edged in front. Sidney Spencer (191-F-85, college: Tennessee), Erin Lawless (188-F-85, agency: LBM Management, college: Purdue) and Katarina Hrickova spurred Maxima Broker as they finished the starting period in front 16:14. The teams traded baskets throughout the second stanza before Erin Lawless and Cathrine Kraayeveld (193-F-81, agency: LBM Management, college: Oregon) gave the visitors a 5-point cushion. Adriana Gresnerova however had the last laugh in the half as she clipped the margin at 2 points at the interval. Simona Podesvova and Lucia Kupcikova (184-F-84) drew things level early in the third frame and Ruzomberok seemed to find the rhythm. The teams kept it close throughout the tense third stanza but Katarina Hrickova and Erin Lawless ensured a 46:41 advantage for Maxima Broker into the fourth term. When the intrigue seemed to spark Maxima Broker exploded with a 10:1 rally to silence the home side. Simona Podesvova stopped the bleeding but Erin Lawless was there again draining a massive triple and putting the visitors beyond reach.
Erin Lawless produced 22 points and 7 boards for Maxima Broker. Sidney Spencer had 12 points in the winning effort. Simona Podesvova answered with 13 points and 11 boards for Ruzomberok. Lucia Kupcikova delivered 11 points in the loss.

MBK Ruzomberok: Simona Podesvova 13+11 boards, Lucia Kupcikova 11
Maxima Broker: Erin Lawless 22, Sidney Spencer 12


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  SLOVENIA - Women  


Surprising start of play-offs - by Eurobasket News
The play-off time arrived in Slovenian SKL. Four teams clashed in the opening games of the semifinal stage and both encounters brought somewhat sensational results. The regular season champions Celje could not cope with Triglav at home court, neither could AJM Maribor coming up short against Hit Kranjska Gora.
Celje were considered favorites to win the trophy this season but suddenly they appeared to be facing a do-or-die task before the road game against Triglav. Celje wasted a 10-point lead after the first quarter to lose the starting game 76:81 at home. Mojca Markovic (177-G-79) unleashed impressive 30 points to propel Triglav to the victory. Celje seemed to be well in control throughout three quarters and they enjoyed a 62:55 advantage into the fourth period. Iva Ciglar (170-G-85) and Ivona Matic (188-F/C-86) extended the lead to 11 points with just over three minutes to go. But Triglav fired back as they exploded with a stunning 18:0 run leaving Celje behind by 7 points with 11 seconds left. Iva Ciglar capped the regulation with a jumper but could not save the hosts from falling. Spela Erzen (190-C/F-80) produced 17 points, while Ziva Zdolsek (174-G-89) had 14 points, 7 assists and 6 board in the win. Iva Ciglar finished with 28 points for Celje. Ivona Matic canned 20 points in the loss.
In the meantime Hit Kr. Gora upset AJM Maribor 74:57 on the road. The visitors stormed into the game winning the first stanza by 16 points. AJM never came back to life letting the game slip into the visitors hands. Khaili Sanders (191-F-82, college: Clemson) came up with 23 points and 12 boards to pace Hit Kr. Gora. Aya Traore (186-F-83, college: Purdue) added 17 points and 12 boards for the winning side. Ljubica Kure (176-G-81) secured 14 points for AJM Maribor.


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  SPAIN - Women  


Murriel Page was extended by Ollis Soller until 2010 - by Ivan Villar
American center Linda Page (190-C-75, college: Florida) was extended by Ollis Soller last weekend.Page was main actress of great season made by island team.Linda Page has played in spanish league from 8 years ago and she has allways showed a great level.Now Soller will try to extend more players after being the beautiful surprise of this season.The team was built to avoid last places and they are in playoffs for FIBA Eurocup.

Olesa will play FIBA Eurocup next season - by Ivan Villar
Hondarribia Irun- Seat Olesa: 73-75
Olesa Espanyol completed a historic season after winning second game of playoff in Hondarribia.Vasc team was a hard rock again and team of Lucas Mondelo had to fight until the end as the first game of round.This time Helena Boada (174-G-87) was their best player,scoring 18 points and making 24 points of efficience.Stacy Lovelace and Lourdes Pelaez (184-F-76) were principal references of Hondarribia with 21 points each one.Hondarribia finished the season with good taste because they had lower budget than other years.Olesa has showed that they can be a new force in the league.


Ros Casares advances to big LFB final - by Eurobasket News
San Jose - Ros Casares 77-96
Powerful Ros Casares outplayed San Jose on the road finishing the semifinal series with perfect 2-0. Candice Wiggins (180-G-87, college: Stanford) top-scored in victory with 20, Delisha Milton-Jones and Elisa Aguilar netted 15 each, while Amaya Valdemoro helped with 13 pts. The hosts got 16 points from Maria Revuelto and 15 from Eshaya Murphy.

Rivas Ecopolis - Halcon A.Per. 49-60
After disappointing home loss in the first game, Perfumerias managed to beat Rivas on the road and to tie the semifinal series to 1-1. Gunta Basko (181-F-80, college: Siena) shined for the guests draining 15 points. Isabel Sanchez had 12 and Le'Coe Willingham delivered 11, plus grabbed 11 boards. Ruth Riley answered with 15 pts and 8 rebounds in loss.


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  TURKEY - Women  


Mersin and Fenerbahce win the openers - by Eurobasket News
Mersin and Fenerbahce won the Semifinal openers in Turkey. If the win of the Winner of the Regular Season was predictable, than Mersin upset Samsun away from home.
Mersin won over Samsun 87:76 to dominate the majority of the time. The guests opened the game with 19:14 lead and improved to 2 more points at the halftime. Led by Mistie Williams (191-C-83, college: Duke) and Lindsey Harding (173-G-84, college: Duke) Mersin enjoyed 7-point lead at the halftime. Samsun produced 20-19 in the third period to reduce the gap a bit, however after 17-22 lost the opener of the clash. Mistie Williams and Lindsey Harding led Mersin with 21 points each, while Scott nailed 15. Erlana Larkins (185-F-86, agency: 540 Sports, college: N.Carolina) produced 24 points in the losing case. Due to the regular season games the series is tied at 1-1.
Fenerbahce won the first game over Galatasaray 82:72 and has now 2-0 in the series due to the wins in the Regular season. Galatasaray started with 23-13 in the opening quarter, however had 5 points lead at the halftime. With 26-12 in the third period Fenerbahce took a control of the rest of the game and won the clash. Matee Ajavon (173-G-86, college: Rutgers) ended up with 19 points for the hosts and Powell scored 16. Sophie Young delivered 21 points in the losing effort.


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  UNITED KINGDOM - Women  


Eurobasket.com All-English EBL Awards 2008-09 - by Eurobasket
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GandyGandy
Gandy
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Wrice
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CollinsCollins
Collins
GlessnerGlessner
Glessner
#e#6
Player of the Year: Stephanie Gandy (178-F-82) of Sheffield
Guard of the Year: Sabra Wrice (173-G-86) of Northumbria
Forward of the Year: Stephanie Gandy of Sheffield
Center of the Year: Mia Spasowska (186-C) of London M.
Bosman Player of the Year: Mia Spasowska of London M.
Import Player of the Year: Jill Glessner (178-G-85) of Nottingham
Domestic Player of the Year: Stephanie Gandy of Sheffield
Defensive Player of the Year: Joann Overstreet (165-G-83) of Solent
Coach of the Year: Vanessa Ellis of Sheffield

1st Team
Stephanie Gandy of Sheffield
Sarah Naylor (183-F-83) of Sheffield
Stefanie Collins (174-G-82) of UWIC
Jill Glessner of Nottingham
Sabra Wrice of Northumbria

2nd Team
Megan Hoffman (183-F-82) of UWIC
Joann Overstreet of Solent
Loui Hall (183-F-84) of Northumbria
Mia Spasowska of London M.
Caitlin Flood (180-F-86) of Manchester

Honorable Mention
Floreana Piano (168-G) of London HA
Laura K. Butters (178-F-86) of Nottingham
Justina Lambert (178-F) of Sheffield

All-Domestic Players Team
Stephanie Gandy of Sheffield
Sarah Naylor of Sheffield
Megan Hoffman of UWIC
Stefanie Collins of UWIC

All-Imports Team
Jill Glessner of Nottingham
Joann Overstreet of Solent
Sabra Wrice of Northumbria
Mia Spasowska of London M.
Caitlin Flood of Manchester


EBL Stats Leaders
EBL Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
1 Wrice, Northum 25.7
2 Hall, Northum 25.4
3 Glessner, Notting 24.6
4 Naylor, Sheffield 24.1
5 Flood, Manchester 23.9
Rebounds Per Game
1 Gandy, Sheffield 10.2
2 Lambert, Sheffield 10.1
3 Wohlberg, Solent 9.8
4 Wrice, Northumbria 9.7
5 Glessner, Notting 9.5
Assists Per Game
1 Overstreet, Solent 4.6
2 Collins, UWIC 4.2
3 Wrice, Northumbria 4.0
4 Johnson-Allen, Bar 3.7
5 Glessner, Notting 3.2


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  VENEZUELA - Women  


Junior Women's National Championship - by Yelitza La Torre
Caracas (FVB Press) .- The Junior Women's National Championship Basketball will be opened this Friday at the Dome of the Olympic Village of San Juan de Los Morros among great expectations and participation of representatives of 16 regions of the country, including the host state; Guarico.

The elimination round will start at 8:00 am with games between Capital District and Falcon, the next day includes 6 games the opening ceremony will be headed by the president of the Venezuelan Basketball Federation (FVB), Jose Carmelo Cortez.

This time 16 states will be competing in the same number of regions of the country, Distrito Capital, which is current national champion will be defending the throne versus Gurico, Anzotegui, Carabobo, Barinas, Bolivar, Cojedes, Falcon, Lara, Miranda, Merida, Portuguesa, Sucre, Tachira, Zulia and Yaracuy.

first round schedule : 8:00 am, Capital District v. Falcon, 9:45 am, Miranda vs. Sucre, 11:30 am, Lara vs. Barinas, 1:15 pm, Carabobo, Anzoategui vs. 3: 00 pm, Yaracuy vs. Merida, 4:45 pm, Portuguesa vs. Zulia, 6:30 pm, Opening Ceremonies, 7:00 pm, Guarico vs Bolivar.


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  WNBA - Women  


Detroit Shock sign Kristin Haynie (Paleo Faliro Pireus, Greece A1) - by Eurobasket News
The Detroit Shock are bringing back a homestate star.

Kristin Haynie (5'9''-G-83, college: Michigan St.) signed with the Shock on Wednesday, adding depth on the perimeter for the WNBA champions.

The former Michigan State guard averaged 2.8 points and 2.5 assists last season for the Atlanta Dream after playing for the Sacramento Monarchs for three years. She has averaged 3.5 points and two assists in her career.

She led the Spartans to the 2005 NCAA final, then Sacramento drafted her with the ninth overall pick in the WNBA draft.

Haynie is No. 1 in Michigan State's record books with 574 assists and 346 points. The native of Mason became the fourth player in Big Ten history with at least 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists and 300 steals in a career.

Courtesy of www.examiner.com


Lynx waive Navonda Moore, Three sign training camp contracts with Sun - by Eurobasket News
The Minnesota Lynx today announced they have waived guard Navonda Moore (5'10''-G/F-84, college: Alabama).

The Lynx originally signed Moore as an undrafted free agent on April 19, 2007 out of Alabama. Moore was then re-signed for the 2008 season on Feb. 21, 2009.
Moore, a 5-10 guard, averaged 2.0 ppg and 0.9 rpg in 35 career games with the Lynx. Moore averaged 3.0 ppg and 0.9 rpg for Minnesota in 2008. The Jackson, Miss., native scored a career-high 11 points Sept. 14, 2008 at Washington.
The Minnesota Lynx open their 11th year of basketball in the Twin Cities on June 6, 2009 vs. the Chicago Sky at Target Center. Season, group and single-game tickets for the 2009 season are now on sale. For information on ticket packages, call 612-673-8400, e-mail tickets@lynxbasketball.com, or visit the Lynx website at www.lynxbasketball.com. Courtesy of The Minnesota Lynx
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The Connecticut Sun announced the signings of Kristi Cirone (5'8''-G-87), Ashley Hayes (5'10''-G/F-87) and Carrem Gay (6'2''-F-87) to training camp contracts Tuesday. As per team policy, no terms were announced.

A 5-foot-8 point guard from Illinois State University, Cirone is a three-time Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year who led the Redbirds in scoring last season, averaging 18.8 points per game. She led ISU in 10 other statistical categories and ranked second in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.57) as a senior. She is the all-time leading scorer in program history, finishing with 2,139 career points, an average of 16.6 points per game.
Hayes is a 5-foot-10 guard from Murray State who averaged 22.6 points per game as a senior. The first Murray State player to be invited to a WNBA training camp, Hayes scored 20 or more points in 19 games last season for the Racers and also topped 30 points seven times, including five games in a row. She set a school record with 46 points at Tennessee State (2/4), the most ever by a male or female player, and averaged 16.3 points per game during her career.
Gay is a 6-foot-2 forward out of Duke who finished her career ranked ninth all-time in program history with 80 blocked shots. She started 28 of 33 games as a senior at Duke, averaging 6.6 points and 5.1 rebounds per game.
The Connecticut Sun opens its seventh season at home on June 6th against the Washington Mystics at 4 p.m. Season tickets and mini plans are on sale now and can be reserved by calling a Sun Ticket Sales Representative at 1.877.SUN.TIXX, e-mailing the Sun at tickets@connecticutsun.com or visiting www.connecticutsun.com. Courtesy of The Connecticut Sun