A night that was supposed to be magical turned in to a game worth forgetting. Barça started off strong but their performance fizzled out this Halloween evening. Without a doubt, Pascual’s men need to find a way to be strong and decisive team again and surely as time goes on, and as weeks pass, the Blaugrana will find their former form.
This Thursday Pascual’s men were defeated 67 to 71 by the modest French team, Nanterre. The dream of the small foreign town became a reality when its team won their first ever victory in the Euroleague. The French league holders started off on the back foot, but as time ticked off the clock they managed to take control of the game, and at the half they were only trailing by two points (39-37).
Barça broke Nanterre’s momentum thanks to Tomic and Papanikolaou’s power under the basket. Then Abrines gave Barça an 11-point lead (57-46). But in the last quarter, with the scoreboard reading 60 to 51, the Catalans went four minutes without scoring and Naterre took full advantage of the situation (63 to 61). They French team took the lead thanks to Meacham, Naterre’s best player (63-65). Barça managed to equalise before the buzzer, but neither side could deliver a game-winning blow.
The last minute and a half of overtime saw both teams commit nervous errors. The French team took the lead through two free throws and Sada equalised with 28 second left (67-67). Foster, with seven seconds left on the clock, put Naterre ahead and seconds later Navarro missed his three-pointer attempt. Thomas, with two free throws, sealed the win for the French team.