Maccabi falls in heartbreaking fashion 69-68 to Red Star in Belgrade

Nov 24, 2022 | Holyland Hoops

Maccabi Tel Aviv suffered a heart breaking 69-68 defeat at the hands of Red Star Belgrade as the yellow-and-blue couldn’t find a way to pull out the victory coming up empty on their final two possessions of the game.

Both teams came into the matchup exhausted after wins earlier in the week with the yellow-and-blue defeating Olympiacos 90-84 and the hosts downing ALBA Berlin 88-84.

Luca Vildoza – Photo Credit: Red Star

Red Star came out flying in the first quarter as Luca Vildoza was active from deep for the hosts while Lorenzo Brown did the same for Oded Katash’s team but the Serbian squad took a 27-18 lead after ten minutes. Wade Baldwin got busy in the second quarter and Bonzie Colson also went from deep to help cut the advantage to 36-29 by halftime.

Nemanja Nedovic – Photo Credit: Red Star

Roman Sorkin began to score at will in the paint to give Maccabi a short lived 39-38 lead but Nemanja Nedovic sent Dusko Ivanovic’s team back in front 50-47 after thirty minutes of play. Hassan Martin and Ben Bentil scored early in the final frame but Brown and Sorkin brought Maccabi to within 69-68 with less than a minute left. However, Red Star’s defense held firm while the yellow-and-blue’s poor decision making on the last two possessions of the game sent them to their second loss in Belgrade in less than a week.

Lorenzo Brown- Photo Credit: Euroleague

Brown paced Maccabi with 23 points and Sorkin added 16 points in the loss, while Nedovic scored 12 points and Martin chipped in with 11 points in the win. Up next for the yellow-and-blue is the Israeli Classico against Hapoel Jerusalem on Sunday night.

Oded Katash – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

“It was a tough game and we are in the middle of a tough schedule” a disappointed Katash began. “We gave up 27 points in the first quarter and we won the last three but it wasn’t enough. We kept fighting and it wasn’t an easy game. We tried to change lineups and used small lineups. It went to the last possession and it wasn’t our game. We have to keep our heads up.”

“This proves these guys are very tough,” Ivanovic said. “Now they believe. And I think the game was how we thought about the game. Maybe in some moments, we needed a little more on offense to play easier, but I think how the game was, we deserved the victory.”

Roman Sorkin – Photo Credit: Euroleague

Ben Bentil for Red Star and Roman Sorkin for Maccabi Tel Aviv each scored to get the game rolling, Lorenzo Brown went from deep and Luca Vildoza hit a pair of 3-pointers to give the hosts a 13-7 lead midway through the frame. Brown went from downtown, John Holland scored a deuce as did Nemanja Nedovic while Filip Petrusev went from the inside and then the outside to give Dusko Ivanovic’s squad a 27-18 lead after ten minutes of play.

Luka Mitrovic – Photo Credit: Euroleague

Wade Baldwin got on the stat sheet with a pair of baskets to start the second quarter, Luka Mitrovic responded as did Nikola Ivanovic but Bonzie Colson nailed a corner 3-ball and Brown sent an alley-oop to Sorkin to cut the lead to 36-29 at halftime.

Wade Baldwin – Photo Credit: Euroleague

Sorkin got busy with a trio of baskets to begin the third quarter, Baldwin and Brown added baskets to put Oded Katash’s team in front 39-38 midway through the period. Nedovic and Mitrovic found points, Jarell Martin scored a 3-point play and Brown added points at the other end, Mitrovic scored a 3-point play and John Dibartolomeo went from deep but Red Star retook the lead, 50-47 after thirty minutes of action.

Josh Nebo – Photo Credit: Euroleague

Bentil began the fourth quarter with points for the hosts, Maccabi’s Josh Nebo scored a trio of baskets, Ivanovic and Nedovic both went from downtown while Bentil found Hassan Martin in the paint to keep Red Star in front 62-58 with five minutes remaining in regulation time. Martin scored a quartet of free throws, Ognjen Dobric scored off the break, Sorkin cleaned up a miss, Brown found points inside but Baldwin lost the ball and Brown last gasp shot came up short as Red Star took the win.

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