Realising the importance of victory, the Blaugranes set up to play a very compact game. Although the home side quickly went ahead, Pesic's players responded, thanks to Higgins with nine points, and Davies, who was very successful at the basket. With some ease, Barça went up +9 (18-27, min 9), and the difference could've been widened in the last play had they not missed three free throws.
Despite the points difference the hosts came storming back, and owing to their excellent defence, they were able to lead by a single point (33-32, min 15). The visitors stemmed the flow but Wilbekin, with two free throws and a triple in the last action, put the Israelis seven points ahead (48-41) at the break.
Mirotic, Claver and Tomic's two-pointer at the start of the third quarter allowed Pesic's side to draw level (56-56, min 27), however, three consecutive three-pointers from the hosts put distance between the sides again (65-56, min 29).
Kuric, Mirotic and Oriola scored three consecutive three pointers of their own (71-68, min. 34), but losing the ball when in possession became something of a habit and Maccabi didn't need asking twice (84-72, min 37). In desperation, Barça tried to bag some more three-pointers through Delaney and Mirotic, but their hopes were ultimately in vain.
Barça have the opportunity to redeem themselves on Thursday against Fenerbahce (6:45pm CET) and on Sunday in the domestic competition against Montakit Fuenlabrada (12.00pm CET). Both fixtures are away.
Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv, 92
Maccabi Fox Tel Aviv: Bryant (2), Wilbekin (18), Acy (-), Hunter (12), Zoosman (7) -starters- Reynolds (6), Caloiaro (12), Avdija (3), Jackson (2), Dorsey (19), Wolters (3), Cohen (8).
Barça: Hanga (-), Claver (6), Mirotic (22), Tomic (11), Higgins (13) - starters- Davies (7), Ribas (-), Smits (-), Oriola (3), Delaney (13), Kuric (10).
Periods: 27-20 / 48-41 / 65-57 / 92-85
Officials: Ilija Belosevic, Emin Mogulkoc, Tomislav Hordov.