Hapoel Tel Aviv thumped Hamburg 118-101 as seven players scored in double digits to move their EuroCup record to 10-2. The Reds came out on fire and their offense was running in top gear from tip-off as captain Bar Timor recorded his European career high with 21 points.
Hapoel Tel Aviv scored at will over the course of the first half as Timor was hitting his shots from deep, Kyle Alexander was in charge of the paint while John Holland and Xavier Munford also found points as four Reds featured in double digits after just twenty minutes of play that saw the hosts take a 65-52 advantage.
Hamburg started to cut into the Hapoel lead as Aleksandar Dziewa, Seth Hinrichs and Vincent King all scored while Mark Hughes drilled home a triple to pull the visitors to within a lone point 84-83 after 30 minuets of action, but Idan Zalmanson, Munfrod and Holland all scored to run away with a 17-point win.
Timor led the way with 21 points, Alexander and Holland each dropped 18 points, newcomer Dez Wells who was making his debut, Munford scored 15 points while Zalmanson and Gil Beni each added 14 points in the win. Dziewa scored 23 points, King added 17 points and Hinrichs scored 16 points in the loss.
“This win for us was a lot about character and unity that we have in our team,” head coach Danny Franco said following the gam. “We had a short roster over the last few games due to injuries to main players. But guys are filling in and they love to play together and play for each other and even in a game like today where our mind was thinking properly but our legs were exhausted, we were able to insist that we play with a never give up attitude and that is what led us this important win. In the third quarter when we were so tired we decided that we were going to give everything on the floor for the last ten minutes and I am happy that is what we did to take the win.”
The bench boss continued, “We need the guys to recover which is the most important thing. We have another guy waiting for us back in israel in Will Cummings as well as Dez Wells who played today and I am not sure that we would have won the game without him. We are not looking ahead to next Wednesday but just to this coming Saturday and I hope that the arena will be full and can to help us during these rough days and can give us the energy and support to go for another W.”
MVP Bar Timor talked about the victory following the game, “We started pretty good on defense but after that it was pretty bad. But on offense we shared the ball and scored a lot to take the win. I feel good on the court as I have been after the past few games. We decided that in the third quarter despite being exhausted rear we wanted to go home with a win I am very proud of the guys that left everything they had on the floor. On Saturday the arena will be packed and that will really help us with the tough games we have coming up.”
In Israeli league play, Maccabi Ramat Gan downed Hapoel Afula 71-63 in a game that was controlled by the hosts throughout the 40 minutes of play. Shmulik Brenner’s squad grabbed a 39-36 lead at halftime while a 21-6 third quarter led by Isaiah Miles built up the Ramat Gan lead as they cruised to the win.
Miles scored 22 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, Alex Hamilton added 10 points while Jimmy Hall and Karam Mashour each scored 9 points in the win. Tomer Assayag and Marcellus Earlington each scored 12 points in the loss.