The leader of the Superleague is defeated. Tbilisian Vera beat Batumi today at Tbilisi Olympic Palace, which was a significant victory for them. It advanced them to the 2nd place in the standings for now, before other matches take place.
15th round started in Rustavi yesterday, continues today in Tbilisi. The leader of the standings and Vera, which was quite close to the first three teams, met each other in the first match. Batumi, trained by Gia Kazanjian, was one step away from the victory, however, due to mistakes made in the last minutes and mainly, effectiveness of Vera, they lost 82:84.
The final period was the most interesting. In few seconds after it started, Vera became a leader for the first time. Before that, Batumi was leading throughout 3 periods mostly by 5-10 points. However, Vera is a team which doesn’t give up despite any difference and fights until the end.
Thanks to the effectiveness of Brandon Slay and Givi Baqradze, Vera, trained by Irakli Khoshtaria, started reducing difference. Batumians had just 6-point advantage for the big break and Vera even reduced it to 2 points after winning the third period 20:16. Slay made a three-pointer shot and the score was 67:66, but Batumi managed to make a counterattack and advanced again 74:67.
Decisive 5 minutes of the match decided everything and Givi Baqradze did a great job. He made lots of efforts to bring his team to the victory. The score was 80:80 at the beginning of the final minute. It was obvious that a single mistake could decide the fate of this match. However, Batumi lost 2 attacks and Vera made a profit of it – 84:80.
Brandon Slay led the winners with 28 points. Givi Baqradze scored 22 points, 4 assists and 3 steals. Their centre – Wendell Lewis had 16 points and 9 rebounds. He was very important player for his team to lean on in the second half. Nikola Vujovic was the most effective with 22 points and 11 rebounds in Batumi. Collin Malcolm collected 20 points and 5 assists.
Another match, between TSU and Cactus, will be held today, 16:00, at Tbilisi Olympic Palace.