Basketball: Maccabi Struggles To Finish The Round Perfect

– by Amir Shoam

Maccabi Tel Aviv finished the 1st round of the basketball Euroleague group stage with a perfect 5-0 score, after a close-fought 78-76 win over Alba Berlin. Maccabi (this time in blue uniforms) scored the first 12 points of the game, but Alba showed improvement during the first half and first equalized the score at 30-30. The host even led 40-46 during the 3rd quarter, but another impressive run sent Maccabi back to lead 52-47. Alba missed its last throw, which cost it the game.

More after the jump.
Tonight’s hero was forward Devin Smith, with 20 points, 3 assists and 1 block in 28 minutes. Israeli swingman Guy Pnini made an important contribution off the bench, with 11 points, 3 rebounds, 2 steals and 1 assist in 16 minutes. Malcolm Thomas added 9 points, 6 rebounds and a steal in 22 minutes. Next Thursday Maccabi will host the Spanish Unicaja Malaga.

Soccer – Hapoel Tel Aviv was beaten 0-4 in Czech by Viktoria Plzen in the European league group stage. On Sunday the team will play against Maccabi Tel Aviv, and coach Yossi Abukasis had decided to keep many of his first-stringers on the bench in order to rest them.

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