SPORTS

Panionios ends PAOK’s home record

Panionios broke the unbeaten home record of PAOK in the basketball league on Saturday, while fan violence marred the game between Peristeri and Aris.

The A1 league returned to action on Saturday and Monday, though without Panathinaikos’s game at Apollon Patras, as the Greens are preparing for their away game at Barcelona on Thursday that will decide whether they enter the Euroleague Final Four.

Olympiakos, who will face Anadolu Efes at home for the same purpose, played Panelefsiniakos on Monday and strolled to an easy 85-60 win at the Peace and Friendship Stadium. The result means that Olympiakos has mathematically clinched the top spot in the regular season and will enjoy home advantage throughout the play-offs.

It appears that Panelefsiniakos, Kavala and Peristeri will fight it out for the last remaining spot in next season’s A1, as two out of the three will likely go down, after the weekend’s results.

Kavala is the hot favorite to descend to the A2 after losing 70-66 at home to Kolossos Rhodes, while Peristeri lost 68-57 to Aris in Athens in a game interrupted for 15 minutes when fans hurled a variety of objects onto the court. The match continued for the remaining 19 seconds in front of empty stands.

Yet it was Panionios who scored the most impressive win of the 24th round, beating PAOK 66-59 in Thessaloniki on Saturday. The Nea Smyrni club has now taken the upper hand in the battle for third, behind Greece’s two major powerhouses, Olympiakos and Panathinaikos.

In other games on Saturday, KAO Dramas downed AGO Rethymnou 84-80 and Ikaros defeated Ilisiakos 86-71.

In the women’s game, Panathinaikos was crowned champion on Saturday after scoring a third win in as many games over runner-up Elliniko, including the matches between the two teams in the regular season. Athinaikos, champion in the four previous years, ended up third.