Baldwin boosts Maccabi Tel Aviv postseason chances with stellar performance in 98-90 win over Villeurbanne

Mar 19, 2024 | Holyland Hoops

Maccabi Tel Aviv downed Villeurbanne 98-90 as Wade Baldwin scored 30 points in an all-star performance to help the yellow-and-blue chalk up yet another victory as they have now won four Euroleague games in a row to raise their record to 17-13 and inch closer to the postseason.

Oded Katash’s squad started the game off well with Baldwin, Bonzie Colson and Josh Nebo all finding point early and often but Nando De Colo, Paris Lee along with big man Yousoupha Fall scored at will to head into halftime with a 49-47 lead. Villeurbanne kept scoring into the second half to go up 64-54 midway through the third quarter but Maccabi captain John Dibartolomeo, Baldwin and Nebo along with Colson came all the way back to notch the victory.

Wade Baldwin – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Baldwin scored 30 points and dished out 10 assists to finish with an efficiency rating of 46, Colson scored 23 points and Nebo added 18 points and 10 rebounds in the win. De Colo scored 18 points while Fall and Lee each scored 17 points in the loss.

Oded Katash – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

“It wasn’t pretty but we found a way to win,” Maccabi head coach Oded Katash said. “The pressure was on us especially at this time of the season. I can say as a coach that we need some energy but I need to take responsibility for the way the game plan was in the first half which wasn’t the right one. We changed it and the way we wanted to play on defense and forced the guys to play with more energy and that is on me.”

“I think for a lot of minutes the offense effected the defense for some players that really impacted the other side of the court. We showed character and we played against a really good team who have played really well, we have to give them credit and I’ll take the W,” Katash concluded.

“I’m proud how the guys fought but it wasn’t enough,” Villeurbanne head coach Pierric Poupet said. “We lacked some rebounds in the first half and we can think we lost the game in the second half but it’s the little details along the way. It was a good game but not enough, we have to play another game in 48 hours. Any mistake we made Wade Baldwin took advantage, great players make great plays.”

Wade Baldwin – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

The game MVP Wade Baldwin spoke about the win, “We continue to find a way to win games and close games. We get rebounds, we get stops, we have guys committed to do the right things and to play hard when we need to. We are competing to be a top 6 team to stay out of the Play In and that was a good push to get there.”

Josh Nebo – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Josh Nebo also discussed the victory, “I think we just found way. The game wasn’t pretty and we didn’t play our best basketball but we found way to win which is the most important thing right now. Just competing playoff defense, getting defections, rebounding and just staying together.”

Wade Baldwin – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Wade Baldwin, Bonzie Colson, Jake Cohen and Josh Nebo all scored to get Maccabi Tel Aviv off and running, Edwin Jackson, Deshaun Thomas and Paris Lee answered, Lorenzo Brown went from downtown, Nebo and Baldwin scored but Nando De Colo, Noam Yaacov and Joffrey Lauvergne all responded to close to within 23-21 after ten minutes of play.

John Dibartolomeo – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Lauvergne began the second quarter with points in the paint, John Dibartolomeo drilled home a triple, Nebo put in a deuce, Baldwin scored and Nebo dunked forcing Villeurbanne to call timeout with Maccabi ahead 32-28 midway through the period. De Colo and Thomas went from deep, Youssoupha Fall scored as well, Colson answered, Lee and Baldwin traded triples as the visitors grabbed a 49-47 advantage at halftime.

Wade Baldwin – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Fall continued to do as he pleased in the paint to start off the third quarter, David Lighty went from the inside and outside, Baldwin and Antonius Cleveland scored for Oded Katash’s team but Thomas scored to keep Villeurbanne in front 60-54 with 5:07 left in the frame. Lee drilled a triple so did Dibartolomeo, Nebo and Baldwin scored, De Colo dropped a deuce and Dibartolomeo went from deep again to pull to within 69-66 after thirty minutes of action.

Wade Baldwin – Photo credit: Djordje Kostic

Dibartolomeo scored to begin the fourth quarter, De Colo went from the inside and outside, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot put in a deuce, Colson nailed a triple and a deuce to put Maccabi in front 77-76 with five minutes left in regulation time. Baldwin hit a midrange, Cleveland went from beyond the arc, Thomas and Fall put in 3-point plays, Baldwin and Nebo both hit their free throws while the former knocked down another deuce and the latter dunked, Lee went from deep, but so did Colson to wrap up the win.

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