Naples turns off the Virtus. Varese crisis: -39 at home

In a sold out Palabarbuto, Mayo and McDuffie lead the team to success (92-89) against Bologna, in their first defeat of the season. Reggio Emilia dominates in Masnago, the Varese GM Conti resigns. Treviso defeats Trento in the final. The defense of Trieste makes the difference: Tortona ko Brescia is alive and goes to Sassari

From our correspondent Mario Canfora

Surprise at noon: the newly promoted Napoli beats (with merit) 92-89 Virtus Bologna unbeaten this season (eight out of eight between the championship, Eurocup and Supercoppa) and, considering last season, by 18 games (last knockout on 10 May, at home against Trento, the last of the regular season). A clear success, built by coach Pino Sacripanti with intelligence and patience against the tricolors who appeared for long stretches tired and nervous.


In the first 20 ‘Naples immediately offers a test of rare beauty, with McDuffie (not entered in the quintet) who drives the Bolognese defense crazy scoring repeatedly (3/4 from 6.75) and with the Lithuanian Velicka impressive for the lucidity expressed. So it happens that Bologna (in Naples without Teodosic, Mannion and Jaiteh) has always ticked off, never gives the impression of being in the game apart from the opening minutes. He suffers a lot in defense, in attack he has only points from Weems, for the rest he is a jumble of poor ideas and equally poor productivity. No double-digit player in the points scored after 20 ‘, bad from 3, in short, little general desire. In Naples it does not seem true to play the game, even with Mayo in the last game (he returns to the States tomorrow for serious personal problems, the club is looking for a replacement, it will not be easy to find him) and Rich always unconvinced to shoot. The 48-37 of the long rest also coincides with the maximum advantage of the morning, +11.


Upon returning, the usual Weems tries to shake Bologna, even -1 arrives after 4 ‘(53-52) but it is a flash in the pan, either because Scariolo’s team always makes a lot of mistakes (just 1/6 in the free Pajola …), while Gevi finds resources from everyone in turn. The new extension arrives without too much stress (68-58 at 30 ‘), Mayo (mvp) and McDuffie are irrepressible, at 35’ the maximum advantage reaches +12 (80-62). The public (Palabarbuto sold out with 2,400 official appearances) is irrepressible, the team never loses its compass. But it’s not over: fatigue makes itself felt, Napoli is too wrong and we arrive at 15 ”from the siren at 88-87 with two triple from Weems. After 3 ”Pajola fouls Mayo who scores 2/2: 90-87. On the overturning of Elegar’s foul on Cordinier at -8 “: 2/2, 90-89. Time-out, the ball reaches Elegar who is fouled: 2/2 at -7 “, 92-89. Bologna throw-in, with Hervey failing the triple of the possible overtime: it ends 92-89 with Napoli thus hitting a victory that is not only prestigious, but certainly fundamental in terms of salvation.

Naples: McDuffie 22, Mayo 19, Parks 15.

Virtus Bologna: Weems 23, Hervey 14, Cordinier 12.

Treviso smiles again after two knockouts, storming Trento in a sprint. The last 100 seconds were decisive and, above all, the triples of Dimsa and Sokolowski that blow the long balance of a beautiful and vibrant match. At 76-71 from Veneto it seems over, but a Reynolds basket keeps the Dolomites alive. Treviso, however, responds with a couple of excellent defenses and the free throws again by Dimsa and an excellent Akele close the score. Trento lives on the Forray-Flaccadori duo (29 points and 9 rebounds overall), but has to give up after two wins in a row.

Trento: Forray 15, Flaccadori 14, Williams 13.

Treviso: Akele 14, Sokolowski 13, Dimsa e Sims 12.

Trieste returns to victory. Large success on Tortona which allows Ciani’s team to keep the Allianz Dome floor untouched, avenging the defeat remedied in the Super Cup. Two points deserved for a team that was able to limit with determination the offensive talent of an opponent who never found the keys to undermine the Trieste defense and ended up surrendering at the end of the first fraction. Bertram struggles to overcome the good defense of an Allianz that concedes very little in her half, finds dangerous initiatives only with a Daum but fails to stop the thrust of an opponent who, point by point, reaches the maximum advantage just before of the siren with the support of Konate who signs the 44-28 at the end of the first half. The start of the second half was red and white: Corey Sanders inspires an Allianz who is not satisfied with the good advantage accumulated in the first part of the match and continues to push on the accelerator. Grazulis makes no mistake, the playmaker from Trieste signs the 55-33 which gives the team of Ciani the new maximum advantage. Ramondino tries to shuffle the cards by changing his quintets but cannot find the right chemistry by closing the third set under nineteen at 66-47. Last ten minutes of the academy with Trieste that continues to push and gives the young Longo the joy of the first basket in Serie A, a triple that fixes the final 88-57.

Trieste: Konate 17, Grazulis 14, Delia 13

Tortona: Daum 18, Cain 12, Filloy 10


Reggio Emilia dominates, Varese collapses under a humiliating -39. At the end of the race, the Varese GM Conti announces his resignation. The former Caja reveals all the technical and mental limits of a Varese which Vertemati has not been able to build an offensive or defensive identity. The guests only need a first half of full control (+19 30-49) to force a very heavy fourth consecutive defeat to a Varese which, without Beane due to midweek illness, suffers in every voice of the scout: the evaluation figure is sensational (57 against 139 of Reggio Emilia). At the start, the Unahotels offers some passes to the area, highlighting the difficulties in shooting Varese. In attack, Cinciarini (11 assists) leads a quintet that exploits the talent of Olisevicius and Thompson, but above all the amnesia in the defensive rotations of Kell and his teammates, for a double-digit advantage already at the start of the second quarter (+13 21-34 at 12’30 “). It is not enough, because Cinciarini enters like a knife in the butter of the defective defense of the home team to increase, between the two halves, the external advantage (+22 30-52 to 20’40 “). A blaze from Kell, leading to six points in a row, is stopped by the former Strautins. The rest is only agony for an Openjobmetis overwhelmed by the whistles of Masnago and called to question itself, as soon as possible, about its future.

Varese: Kell 17, Jones 14, Gentile 11

Reggio Emilia: Crawford 18, Hopkins 13, Cinciarini and Strautins 12

Brescia takes pleasure in it and finds the second victory in a row, overtaking Sassari. At PalaSerradimigni everything is decided in the third quarter, when Della Valle and Mitrou-Long dig the +16 partial that directs the game. First part of the match in favor of Brescia, in a game with a low pace. To make the difference for the guests are the percentages from long distance: Mitrou-Long and Della Valle strike, while Sassari cannot find continuity from Clemmons’ direction. In the worst moment for the Sardinians it is Treier, coming off the bench, who finds a break that prevents Germani from escaping, softening a possible passive heavier than the +8 with which the first two quarters are filed. After the long break, Sassari finds the break of 10-2 which rebalances the game, exploiting the added value offered by Bendzius in the construction of the game; Skinny forced to time out, shakes his team, finds defense and shooting from 6.75 and with Mitrou-Long and Della Valle protagonists, builds an important partial counter, attacking the area well and digging the groove of +16 that closes the third fraction. Sassari tries to return by passing from the defensive intensity and the eternal Logan, but the unsportsmanlike foul of Burnell at -10 with 3 ‘from the end, is worth the new break of +14 that closes the match.

Sassari: Bendzius 16, Logan 11, Mekowulu 10

Brescia: Della Valle 21, Mitrou-Long 17, Moore 8

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Naples turns off the Virtus. Varese crisis: -39 at home

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