It’s a winner! Scottie Wilbekin leads Maccabi Tel Aviv over Olympiacos 71-70

Maccabi Tel Aviv shocked Olympiacos 71-70 thanks to Scottie Wilbekin’s heroics as the Yellow & Blue improved their Euroleague record to 18-8. Wilbekin scored a trio of free throws and then a huge 3-pointer with 10 seconds left in the fourth quarter to secure the one point victory. With the win Ioannis Sfairopoulos’s squad moved into fourth place after CSKA fell to Barcelona on a Nikola Mirotic buzzer beater as they moved closer to clinching a playoff berth and home court advantage.

Maccabi took a ten point lead into halftime on the strength of Elijah Bryant’s 10 first half points but Georgios Bartzokas’s team came back thanks to strong play by Wade Baldwin and Shaquielle McKissic to take the lead. However, Scottie Wilbekin was able to pull the Yellow & Blue through at the end to give the hosts the surprising win.

Dov Halickman Photography

Wilbekin led Maccabi with 21 points, Elijah Bryant added 13 points while Tyler Dorsey and Othello Hunter chipped in with 9 points a piece. McKissic scored 14 points and Wade Baldwin scored 13 points in the loss.

Dov Halickman Photography

Elijah Bryant got Maccabi Tel Aviv off and running with a triple while Scottie Wilbekin and Othello Hunter also scored points but Octavius Ellis, Kostas Papanikolaou and Georgios Printezis also found the bottom of the basket for Olympiacos as the Yellow & Blue held a slim 9-8 lead midway through the first quarter. Bryant hit another 3-pointer out of the timeout but Shaquielle McKissic matched him at the other end of the court and then flew in for a layup and a foul. Printezis put a floater over Angelo Caloiaro, Yovel Zoosman scored his first points after returning from injury and Jalen Reynolds put points in from the paint as Ioannis Sfairpoulos’s squad took a 20-16 lead after ten minutes of play.

Dov Halickman Photography

Aaron Jackson drained a 3-pointer to start the second quarter while former Maccabi guard Taylor Rochestie scored one as well as Maccabi held a 23-19 advantage with 6:38 remaining in the first half. Reynolds collected an offensive board and slammed it home but more points from McKissic and a brilliant cross court assist to Sasha Vezenkov for a 3-pointer gave Olympiacos a 26-25 lead with four minutes left until halftime. Caloiaro put his name on the scoresheet with a triple, Wilbekin dunked a bucket as well and Tyler Dorsey scored seven straight points for the Yellow & Blue as Maccabi took a 39-29 lead into the break.

Dov Halickman Photography

Deni Avdija got busy in the third quarter for Maccabi as he picked off the ball and put in a layup but Wade Baldwin scored a trio of free throws and a jumper, however, Wilbekin hit a wide open triple as the Yellow & Blue stayed in front 44-37 midway through the frame. Ellis put back a board for Georgios Bartzokas’s side and a hot Baldwin drilled a 3-pointer as did Printezis and Dwight Buycks to take a 48-47 advantage with 1:58 left in the period. Wilbekin scored a pair off the glass and hit a buzzer beater 3-pointer as Maccabi went into the fourth quarter ahead 52-50.

Dov Halickman Photography

Reynolds threw a cross court pass to Wilbekin who buried a triple but Buycks came right back to score points in the paint while Vezenkov scored a pair of 3-pointers and Baldwin hit a two as Olympiacos grabbed a 60-55 lead with 6:11 remaining in regulation time. Ellis increased the lead with a dunk and Baldwin went airborne for a dunk of his own and McKissic scored a floater as Olympiacos stayed in front 66-60 with 2:08 left in the game. Bryant hit a triple and Hunter dunked, McKissic hit a jumper but three free throws and a triple with 10 seconds left from Wilbekin gave Maccabi a shocking one point victory.

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