Maccabi Tel Aviv stuns Real Madrid 75-74 with 10-0 run to take win

Mar 24, 2022 | Holyland Hoops

Maccabi Tel Aviv stunned Real Madrid 75-74 on a pair of late Scottie Wilbekin free throws as the yellow-and-blue came all the way back from 9-points down late in the game to steal the win. Avi Even’s squad were in a 74-65 hole with 5:41 remaining in the game as MVP Keenan Evans, Derrick Williams and Wilbekin helped them to a 10-0 run while keeping Pablo Laso’s scoreless to snatch the victory from the jaws of defeat. The win moves Maccabi’s Euroleague record to 13-11 good for 6th place with 4 games remaining in the regular season.

Despite losing the battle of the boards with Real outrebounding Maccabi 48-33 with 18 on the offensive glass, as well as dishing out 24 assists to the yellow-and-blue’s 15, Maccabi featured five players in double digits which helped the hosts to the win.

Guerschon Yabusele – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Guerschon Yabusele had the hot hand early on for Los Blancos as Real but Keenan Evans and James Nunnally paced Maccabi in the second quarter to counter Adam Hanga and big man Walter Tavares, however, the visitors held a 44-41 advantage at halftime.

Derrick Williams – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Thomas Heurtel started scoring at will while Vincent Poirier began hurting Maccabi inside, but Jalen Reynolds, Nunnally and Evans provided the offense, Wilbekin made his free throws in the clutch as Angelo Caloiaro and Derrick Williams used stifling defense in crunch time to take the victory in front of the rabid home fans.

Avi Even – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

“We played against one of the best teams in Europe,” Maccabi coach Avi Even said following the game. “I’m happy we were able to overcome and win this battle. It was a tough one. This was a good week for us and I’m looking forward to the next one.”

Pablo Laso – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

“We played a solid game and we’re in control,” Real coach Pablo Laso explained. “We had some stupid turnovers and moved the ball well. We had open jumpers and defensively we stayed with our plan. We didn’t get the victory and Maccabi did.”

James Nunnally – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

James Nunnally spoke about the victory, “In a tough situation, [Avi Even] has been positive with us. He just wants us to be better, trying to teach us as much as he can, and I think we are learning, trying to put all in on the court as best as we can every day. We keep learning, getting better and believing in each other, believing in what he is saying, because if we believe in each other, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks.”

Keenan Evans- Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Game MVP Keenan Evans also reflected on the win, “[What made this night so special for me] were my teammates. We just tried to play hard, and the work started the show, and this is our first double-week we got both wins, which is very useful for us.”

Scottie Wilbekin – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Evans led the way with 19 points while Nunnally and Wilbekin each added 14 points in the win. Yabusele paced Real with 14 points, Vincent Poirier added 13 points and Thomas Heurtel chipped in with 11 points in the loss.

Guerschon Yabusele – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Guerschon Yabusele and Derrick Williams traded triples to get the first quarter off an running, James Nunnally took his own rebound and scored off the glass and Scottie Wilbekin found points as well but Yabusele went from deep again twice to give Real Madrid a 10-9 lead midway through the frame. Gabriel Deck went from downtown, Wilbekin matched him at the other end, Jalen Reynolds hit a long two, Yabusele again went from behind the arc while Nigel Williams-Goss scored inside as the visitors took a slim 21-20 lead after ten minutes of end to end action.

Jalen Reynolds – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Reynolds dunked to to begin the second quarter, Williams-Goss dialed up long distance, Angelo Calaoiro jammed the ball, Vincent Poirier completed a 3-point play and Adam Hanga glided the the hoop for a deuce as Avi Even called timeout with Real in the lead 29-26 with 6:51 left in the first half. Keenan Evans went from deep, Nunnally added points in the paint, Walter Tavares dunked, Evans scored a 3-point play, Tavares put a pair in in the paint, Sergio Llull nailed a triple while Nunnally did the same but Hanga scored a quick pair of buckets to take a 44-41 advantage at halftime.

Vincent Poirier – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Reynolds put in points to start off the third quarter, Hanga responded, Williams finished off a steal and Reynolds scored over Tavares to give Maccabi a 47-46 lead midway through the period. Wilbekin put in a left handed floater, Evans scored off a Reynolds assist, Thomas Heurtel went from deep twice and Deck added points, but Nunnally came back with a 3-pointer, Ante Zizic added a deuce, however, Poirier put in a pair in the paint to give Pablo Laso’s squad. 66-59 lead after thirty minutes of play.

Keenan Evans – Photo Credit: Dov Halickman

Poirier scored to open the fourth quarter, Wilbekin and Evans scored from deep while Deck came back to keep Real ahead 74-65 with 5:41 remaining in regulation time. Evans nailed a triple and a layup as did Williams, while Wilbekin hit a pair of free throws to ice the game and hand Maccabi the 1-point comeback win.

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