Lietkabelis and Zalgiris book their tickets to Citadele KMT final
Lietkabelis Panevezys and Zalgiris Kaunas are ready to square off in Citadele King Mindaugas Cup final. Both teams beat their opponents in the semi-final.
Fighting in their own arena proved to be an advantage as Lietkabelis beat Juventus Utena. Last year’s bronze medalists put up a scoring show in the second quarter and won 84:73 (16:11, 30:23, 20:20, 18:19).
Lietkabelis had their bigs to thank for the win. Firstly, they masterminded to foul out Mindaugas Kupsas. Secondly, Gabrielius Maldunas and Djordje Gagic scored 32 points in total.
Also, point guard Kyle Vinales had a huge impact on stoping Betsafe LKL star point guard Vaidas Kariniauskas. 14 points, 7 boards and 6 assists for K. Vinales.
Pressure got in the heads of Juventus players who depended only on Mindaugas Kupsas‘ shoulders – 24 points, 10 out of 10 two pointers and 27 efficiency.
It was not as easy as expected for Zalgiris Kaunas in their semi-final against Neptunas Klaipeda. Last year‘s cup winners won 84:72 (15:21, 23:14, 17:18, 29:19).
It was a close battle against a team who are the biggest underdog in Citadele KMT. Joffrey Lauvergne played 25 minutes and scored a monsterous 28 points with 32 efficiency.
Zalgiris managed to get a double-digit lead only in the fourth quarter.
Kudos for Neptunas. They will fight Juventus for the bronze medal and on Saturday it was a huge psychological lift for the youngster team. Norbertas Giga had 16 points against Zalgiris.