Uphill battle to the Final Four for Olympiakos

Getting to the Euroleague’s Final Four tournament is most likely to be an uphill struggle for Olympiakos, as was underscored late Tuesday night by a 84-59 loss against Tau Ceramica in the basketball pair’s best-of-three quarterfinal opener in Vitoria, Spain. Olympiakos needs victory at home in tonight’s second game of the series to level and remain alive, but the Greek club would then require a mighty effort in the best-of-three’s decider in Spain next week, assuming victory tonight. Tau Ceramica, which had eliminated three-time European champion Panathinaikos in last year’s quarterfinals, went into this season’s quarterfinals with an impeccable 6-0 record from the previous stage’s Top 16 action. The Spaniards took control from late in the first period, despite the return to action of Olympiakos shooter Arvydas Macijauskas, who had been sidelined by injury for eight months. Serkan Erdogan led the scoring for Tau with 13 points and was followed by Mirza Teletovic, who registered 10 points. For Olympiakos, Henry Domercant topped the scoring with 13 points and Sam Hoskin ended with 11 points. Tau led 20-12 at the end of the first quarter. The home team made a subdued start in the second period, allowing Olympiakos to narrow the deficit to 22-18 after 14 minutes. But Tau responded to the threat and was able to break away to a 10-point lead, 28-18, midway through the second quarter. By halftime, Tau had established a commanding 12-point lead, 40-28. In the second half, Olympiakos was unable to approach the disciplined Spaniards, who maintained a comfortable lead throughout the third and fourth quarters. Panathinaikos, up 1-0 in its best-of-three quarterfinal series following an 80-58 home win against Dynamo Moscow earlier on Tuesday, also plays its second game tonight, in Moscow. Victory will take the Greek club straight to the Final Four, to be hosted in Athens between May 4 and 6.

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.