BAXI Manresa was reunited this Wednesday with victory in the ACB (100-95) with Chima Moneke as a reference and neutralized Unicaja’s comeback attempt, which went down 24 points and said goodbye to Carpena this season with its fifth defeat consecutive.
The start of the game can perfectly be a reflection of the style of each team: an individualistic Unicaja offensively, with Brizuela as executor, and a coral BAXI Manresa, with five different scorers and a cheerful game that put them with a difference of nine points .
With the entry of Cameron Oliver and Dejan Kravic, the locals improved (13-16), but the individual quality of Joe Thomasson appeared at specific moments to counteract. The Ohio shooting guard is capable of generating a mid-range shot with the ease of a layup on the board.
The first quarter closed with the debut of Senegalese point guard Brandou Badio in the ranks of the Manresa team, who went into the break with a smaller lead than expected (21-23, min 10).
The intensity and success of Pedro Martínez’s men demanded the maximum from Unicaja, which went from hearing beeps at the start to applause. Francis Alonso, who was finally able to play after missing the last game, was unable to defend the most elusive, Thomasson, who continued with his show on the shooting card.
Before the break, Manresa’s rotation worked better than Malaga’s, so Ibon Navarro took off Matt Mooney, who wasn’t working in attack, and brought on Brizuela to re-enlist his team. Although with Chima Moneke plugged in and a 2/12 in triples, it was complicated (42-52).
And then came a key point in the match, the start of the third quarter with Unicaja asleep and BAXI Manresa enjoying themselves. Dani Pérez, Moneke, Sima and a 10-0 run that angered the Unicaja fans, which was not the first time they had seen such disconnections.
With the 42-64 five minutes into the third act, three consecutive three-pointers came from Unicaja that were not accompanied by a good defense. Manresa didn’t have to sweat much to find a free shot, as Pedro Martínez’s men played by heart.
It was too much of an advantage for the Catalan team, which increased along with the Bako-Moneke duo’s points tally. Carpena faded away, until a reaction from his team put them eight away with 2:30 to go.
While the rookie Badio left injured, Unicaja believed in the comeback and got within three points in the final seconds, after losing by up to 24 points, but everything was left in the attempt.