Rivals ready for game two of series
Galatasaray Medical Park hopes to defend its home-court advantage when it takes on Besiktas Milangaz in the second game of the two teams' Beko Turkish Basketball League (TBL) semifinal series.
The Lions host their archrivals at the Abdi Ipekci Arena only 48 hours after winning the opening game.
On Tuesday, Galatasaray Medical Park stopped a late rally by Besiktas Milangaz and took a valuable 75-74 victory on the opening game of the best-of-five series.
Furkan Aldemir had 17 points and five rebounds, while Luksa Andric scored 14 points and Jamon Lucas added 14 points for Galatasaray. Galatasaray Medical Park controlled the game early on and looked on course for a comfortable win, leading 42-28 at the end of the first half.
However, Besiktas Milangaz clawed back with the long-range shooting of Zoran Erceg and Serhat Cetin, who had combined 36 points, shooting 11-for-19 from the field.
The game went to the wire with Jamon Lucas missing two free throws at the end of the game, and Carlos Arroyo's shot hoping to win the game when the Eagles were behind by two points, 73-71, with five seconds left. Arroyo's shot went off the rim, and Aldemir got the rebound before being fouled and converting two of his free throws to give Galatasaray a 75-71. Marcellus Kemp's three-pointer set the score.
“We started the game very well, we opened the gap and made good defense,” Galatasaray Medical Park Oktay Mahmuti said after the game. “Besiktas Milangaz is a very talented team. When we let them slow the tempo and play their own game, they can be very dangerous. So they returned to the game. But our first-half advantage was enough for us to win.”
Besiktas Milangaz coach Ergin Ataman echoed Mahmuti's sentiments.
“In the first half, they were the better side, and in the second half, we were better,” Ataman said. “In the second game we will try to build on our second-half performance.”
Tonight's game starts at 8 p.m. The third and, if needed, fourth games of the series will be played at the Sinan Erdem Dome.
Banvit and Anadolu Efes play in the other semifinal series.