Khimki beat Tsmoki-Minsk on the road – 81:65 (16:17, 21:13, 19:15, 25:20).
Tsmoki-Minsk: Kris Clyburn (18 + 11 rebounds), Toms Leimanis (17), .
Khimki: Errick McCollum (24 + 6 rebounds), Viacheslav Zaitcev (18 + 11 rebounds), Sergey Monia (8 + 5 rebounds).
Tsmoki-Minsk (2-20) approached the last home game with 12-game losing streak. Khimki (11-11) lost twice in a row, but if they win in Minsk and beat Avtodor, and Zielona Gora lose, they take 6th place.
The teams started the game carefully, after 7 minutes there were 6:6 on the scoreboard. The second quarter was more spectacular. The teams started shootout from beyond the arc, and by the half time Khimki made 14:6 run and took significant lead via Viacheslav Zaitcev and Errick McCollum’s efforts – 37:30 after two quarters of play.
In the second half Zaitcev was supported by Timofey Mozgov, who hit his first career three-pointer in the League.
One more three, this time by Sergey Klyuev, on the last minute of the third helped Khimki take double digit lead by the final quarter (56:45).
Khimki were keeping comfortable lead for the majority of the final quarter. With 3 minutes left the score was 69:59 in Khimki’s favor, but then the guests made crucial run. Sergey Monia and McCollum hit 3 threes and decided the game. Khimki still fight for a higher seed in standings.
Viacheslav Zaitcev. The Russian proved himself on both end of the floor: 18 points (8/11 from the field), 11 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks.
32 – number of efficiency points scored by Zaitcev. This is his League’s career-high.
Tsmoki-Minsk head coach Rostislav Vergun:
– There’s no surprise that basketball is about to hit the basket with the ball. If we shoot 35% from the field and 25% of threes, it’s horribly low.
Khimki head coach Andrey Maltsev:
– This was our last away game in the VTB League season. We have one more home game against Avtodor. I’m glad we held this postponed game. Sometimes, I was satisfied with our game. We wanted to allow less than 65 points, the goal was achieved. Young guys had their minutes, we are satisfied with our visit to Minsk.
Tsmoki-Minsk: April 25 @ Astana
Khimki: April 25 vs Avtodor