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Navarro en una acció del duel. FOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

Barça Regal will travel to the Canaries with the groundwork done in their semi-final play iffs after chalking up their second win in the series this lunchtime. Two-nil up, Barça need just one more win to make the Final at a court where they are however, yet to win this season.

Navarro and Toolson leading from the off

It was clear from the off who the two teams’ leading lights were going to be, with Navarro scoring 10 of his team’s first 18 points and Ryan Toolson replying with one more for the visitors. Both sides attacking efficiency meant that the first quarter closed at 23-20 for Barça and set the tone for a great game of basketball.

Still close at the break

The first quarter saw a lot of points from distance, but the second saw both sides begin to pressure inside, with Lorbek, up against Spencer Nelson, whilst at the other end, Eulis Báez put the pressure on Todorovic.

Brad Newley was also looking sharp when he took over from Toolson and the Australian scored five quick points to put the Visitors ahead with three minutes to go to the break.

A three-pointer from Jasikevicius and some more sharp shooting from Navarro sent Barça in 40-36 at half time, with the scores reflecting the closeness of the contest on court.

Lead changes hands in third quarter

Barça moved up a gear in the third quarter, with Navarro, Oleson and Mavrokefalidis – after a great counter attack from Sada – all getting important points. Baez and Toolson kept the visitors in the race, but an excellent score from Lorbek, one-on-one with Baez gave Barça a 12-4 partial scoreline and gave them their largest lead at 52-40.

Herbalife Gran Canària weren’t giving up yet though and Pedro Martínez sent on youngster Alvarado to partner Tomás Bellas and some fast transitions began to wear down Barça’s lead and draw the visitors back into the game at 55-50. Toolson then forced himself on the game with a great three pointer and two more to round off an impressive counter attack and Barça went into the final quarter just one point ahead (58-57).

Sada seals win

Slokar and Beirán took advantage of some nervous mistakes from Barça to put the visitors ahead, before Oleson. ‘Mavro’ and Wallace backed that up with more points and Barça were back in front 67-62 with a comfortable cushion of points and they were able to withstand a mini fightback from Gran Canaria that brought them to within three points with a minute to go.

Navarro and Toolson interchanged scores, but at 74-72 Victor Sada made an all important interception and after being fouled scored the three points that gave Barça a 77-73 win at the end to give them a two game lead going into the next two games at the always difficult court in Las Palmas.

STATISTICS

FCB Regal, 77
Herbalife Gran Canaria, 73

FCB Regal (23+17+18+19): Huertas (9); Navarro (22), Rabaseda (2), Wallace (3), Tomic (1) -cinc inicial- Sada (7), Jasikevicius (3), Todorovic (4), Ingles (-), Mavrokefalidis (-), Oleson (9) i Lorbek (9).

Herbalife Gran Canaria (20+16+21+16): Bellas (9), Toolson (20), Beirán (-), Báez (5), Nelson (10) -cinc inicial- Guerra (2), Newley (17), Alvarado (3), Tavares (-), Oguchi (-) i Slokar (7).

Partial Goals: 23-20 / 40-36 / 58-57 / 77-73

Referees: Juan Luis Redondo, Benjamín Jiménez i Carlos Cortes.

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