SPORTS

Historic Basket League wins for Ionikos and Larissa

GEORGE GEORGAKOPOULOS

Ionikos coach Nikos Vetoulas and his players celebrate a historic win for the Nikaia club.

TAGS: Basketball

Ionikos Nikaias ended a 32-year wait for a top-flight victory in Greek basketball, beating PAOK no less on Saturday, in the third round of games of the Basket League, while Larissa scored its first ever win in the top tier defeating another Thessaloniki team, Aris on Sunday.

Despite playing behind closed doors, due to crowd trouble in the Greek Cup, Ionikos beat PAOK 83-66 led by two former PAOK players, Loukas Mavrokefalidis and Vassilis Charalambopoulos, for the first win by the promoted side on western Attica.

Larissa BC, the team formerly known as Ermis Ayias that received a wild card to join the Basket League and moved to the regional capital of Larissa, also scored its maiden victory as a solid second-half performance saw it overcome once-mighty Aris 92-78 at home.

Champion Panathinaikos defeated last year’s finalist Promitheas Patras comprehensively, as the 99-68 score of their match in Athens on Sunday reveals.

The Greens are one of the three teams left with a perfect record along with Ifaistos Limnou and Peristeri, after Promitheas’ defeat.

Ifaistos came from behind to se off AEK 72-68 on Limnos, staking a claim for a top-four finish, while Peristeri overcame winless Panionios 95-69 at home.

In other games, promoted Iraklis extended its undefeated streak at home that exceeds 600 days to beat Rethymno 74-56, and Lavrio returned from Rhodes with a precious 74-73 win over host Kolossos.

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