Maccabi Tel Aviv defeated Panathinaikos 89-81 in Euroleague play thanks to Scottie Wilbekin’s 12 straight points in the fourth quarter to weather a 39 point performance by Nemanja Nedovic. The Yellow & Blue moved their record to 7-9 in continental action as they almost led wire to wire in the 8-point win.
Wilbekin led Ioannis Sfairopoulos’s squad with 22 points, Othello Hunter added 13 points, Elijah Bryant chipped in with 13 points and Dragan Bender scored 9 points in the win. Nedovic scored 39 points to become the single game scoring leader against Maccabi in the loss.
Both teams got off to a slow start as Scottie Wilbekin helped Maccabi Tel Aviv to a 6-4 lead midway through the first quarter. Zizic found points in the paint, Yovel Zoosman nailed a 3-pointer, Angelo Caloiaro scored while Omri Casspi fed Othello Hunter inside and on the break to bump up the advantage to 21-12 after ten minutes.
Ben Bentil opened the second quarter from deep but Chris Jones, Oz Blayzer, Elijah Bryant and Omri Casspi responded swiftly to increase the lead to 31-18 with 5:43 to play in the half. Bender hit a scoop shot but Nemanja Nedovic and Aaron White got to work for PAO, however, Wilbekin drilled home a triple as did Jones to give Ioannis Sfairopoulos’s squad a 41-30 advantage.
Wilbekin got things rolling with another 3-pointer off a Bender block on the defensive end, Tyler Dorsey finished a Wilbekin steal but Nedovic and Konstantinos Mitoglou scored for Panathinaikos as Maccabi stayed in front 50-38 midway through the third quarter. Nedovic went from downtown twice and Marcus Foster hit a triple as well but Bryant, Jones and Hunter kept the Yellow & Blue ahead 59-52 after thirty minutes.
Jones and Hunter scored to begin the fourth quarter, but Nedovic kept finding the bottom of the basket as did Georgios Papagiannis, however, Bender scored a quick five points to give Maccabi a 70-63 lead with 6:07 remaining in regulation time. Nedovic and Wilbekin kept scoring at either end of the court, Bentil went from deep but so did Scottie Wilbekin as Hunter and Bryant scored his free throws to wrap up an 89-81 Maccabi win.