Marcus Hall netted 25 for Levski's win
Levski with first victory in the Eurohold BIBLDecember 03, 2008 | Balkanleague.net
After a 3 game losing run in the Eurohold Balkan League, Bulgarians Levski finally snatched their first victory. It was a 79-71 away win versus Mega Hypo Leasing. The successful night for "The Blues" in Belgrade came also as a revenge for that last ditch buzzer trey victory of the Serbs just over a month ago in Sofia. With tonight`s victory under their belts Levski now not only have their chances of advancing to the quarterfinal playoffs resurrected, but they can also hope for a climb up the standings of the regular season and thus an easier opponent for that next stage.
Levski guard Marcus Hall was definitely MVP of the game, scoring 25 points, grabbing 9 rebounds and dishing out 5 assists. He was at the top of his game almost throughout the contest and despite his 5 turnovers achieved a game high efficiency rating of 24.
Stanislav Slaveykov had his best performance so far in the Eurohold BIBL as he totalled 16 points, 7 boards and 2 steals. Hall`s American compatriot Dwayne Morton had a good game too, adding another 7 rebounds, as well as 12 points, most of those scored in decisive moments.
After the lead changed hands a few times in the first quarter, it ended at 18-21 in Levski`s favor, thanks to the scoring efforts of Hall, Morton and Nikolay Varbanov. During the second the visitors opened an even bigger lead, shooting guard Stefan Stojacic cut it for Mega, but treys in consecutive possessions by Slaveykov and Asen Velikov brought their team`s advantage to 11 points and 9 at half-time (36-45).
Despite a scrappy third period, Levski managed to retain most of that margin and at the start of the fourth they were leading by 7 points - 55-62. Another strong run by the visitors boosted their lead to a comfortable 16 points âèòõ 6` to go (55-71) but the Serbs weren`t about to surrender so quickly in front of their home crowd. Thanks to some great play by Stojacic, they managed to bring their deficit down to just 4 points with less than a minute to go (71-75). Levski held on though and won the game by 8.
Stefan Stojacic and center Uros Nikolic had 16 pts each to lead the scores for Mega Hypo Leasing, while Dusan Katnic was into double figures too with 10.
Levski players committed 17 turnovers, but that did not prove fatal for the visitors, as they dominated on the boards - they led 33-26 in total rebounds.
Levski now has 2 home fixtures coming up in the Eurohold BIBL, facing Romanians Dinamo first, on 11 December, and then compatriots Rilski Sportist on the 28 January next year.
Mega Hypo Leasing have no more games to play in the competition until the end of this year and they are going to finish it with a 3-3 record. In fact, they only have 2 matches remaining in the regular season for them, both in latter part of January next year - away at Fersped Rabotnicki and at home versus Dinamo.
FULL STATS OF THE MEGA HYPO LEASING - LEVSKI GAME
STANDINGS IN BOTH EUROHOLD BIBL GROUPS
INDIVIDUAL STATS IN THE EUROHOLD BIBL
TEAM STATS IN THE EUROHOLD BIBL