With one game to go in the season, TV Langen is already thinking about who their opponent will in the Pro B play downs, while the Take-Off Wuerzburg Blue Baskets will be battling in the playoffs this season. With one game to go in the regular season they could still jump up a place or two as everything is very tight in the Pro B south standings from four to eight. One guy who has had an amazing season is experienced California native Donovan Morris who is playing for his third team in Germany after playing Pro A with Nordlingen and Regionaliga with TV 1864 Salzkotten last season where he tore up the league playing 19 games averaging 26.5ppg, 6.8rpg, 4.4apg, 1.9spg, FGP: 64.4%, 3Pts: 49.1%, FT: 92.6%. This season is no different as he is near the top of the best scorers in the league averaging 20,9ppg, 5,9rpg and 3,6apg. This season except for a five point effort against Iserlohn in a 75-57 loss he has scored in double figures in 20 of 21 games. He has scored 20 or more points 12 times including 34 and 30 points against BG Karlsruhe. In the last meeting against TV Langen, the ex Long Beach State guard poured in 30 points in a 84-73 losing cause. In order to get perfectly ready for the start of the playoffs, Morris was very focused to get a win for his team and shine as he usually does on the court. With Morris and TV Langen forward Martinis Woody, the two best players of each team that play different positions fought for pride and extra playoff jockeying position as TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy waited until the fourth quarter to do damage as they outscored TV Langen 29-12 winning 76-66. California native Donovan Morris waited 30 minutes until starting to get to work as he poured in 14 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter leading his team to victory. “This was by far the strongest fourth quarter that we have had this season in this kind of situation. We had our other two points guard Constantin Ebert and Nico Brauner out so I had more of a duty to involve everyone else on the team. I wasn´t as aggressive scoring in the first three quarters, but turned it up in the fourth quarter. It was do or die and had to do something and did. Our rebounding intensity was like night and day in the first and fourth quarter. We need to take this momentum of the fourth quarter and use it in the playoffs”, stressed ex Fresno State guard Donovan Morris. TV Langen arrived in the game having lost five of their last six games and played well enough to win after thirty minutes, but completely fell apart in the fourth quarter as they suffered the turnover panic attack where they coughed up so many balls and the needed medicine wasn´t there to correct it. “We lost game completely in the fourth quarter. I came out at the eight minute mark and we led by 10 and the next time I checked the score it was tied. John Florveous was aggressive on the boards, Christoph Wolf hit a huge three pointer and we turned over the ball too much. Benedikt Nikolay did a good job on Morris, but in the fourth quarter he was living in the paint and and scoring off our turnovers”, stressed TV Langen guard Anish Sharda.
TV Langen got off to a solid start leading 6-2 as their two big men Martinis Woody and Tom Alte got easy buckets inside and the South Carolina native Woody had his defensive intensity on blocking two shots. Wurzburg 20 year old Christoph Wolf kept his team in stride nailing a three pointer as TV Langen led 6-5, but the home team had their offensive flow on early as they cruised out on a 9-2 run to extend their lead to 15-7. TV Langen was using an effective inside out game as Michigan native Nick Freer made a powerful two hand dunk, Maxim Schneider snuck inside for two and Nicolay dropped a three pointer. TV Langen would extend their streak to 20-10 as they continued to work for their points in the paint as Schneider used his potent penetration skills for a lay in and Tom Alte was set up nicely from Freer. However TV Langen lost that momentum getting careless in the last two minutes letting Wurzburg go on a 6-0 run to cut the TV Langen lead to 26-20 after one quarter. In the run, Wurzburg got exceptional defensive work from 19 year old German Lukas Beuschlein as he made back to back steals and coast to coast spurts for easy baskets. “TV Langen got off to a good start and were in control. However they let up at the end turning the ball over twice and letting Wurzburg get easy baskets. TV Langen lost the momentum and took some bad shots at the end”, stressed Fraport Skyliners U-14 head coach Igor Starkevic. TV Langen was shooting 64% from the field and 50% from outside while TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy were shooting 38% from the field and 14% from outside. TV Langen had the 9-7 rebound edge and both teams had four turnovers a piece.
In the second quarter, both teams stepped up their defense as there was less scoring as less shots were made and two lead changes, but TV Langen still led at halftime. TV Langen got off on a bang in the second quarter going on a quick 5-0 run to extend their lead to 25-16. In the run it was ex Mainz guard Anish Sharda that was fed by Woody from the low post for an easy lay up and then 23 year old guard Gianluca Raebel hit a three pointer. However this wasn´t going to be a game where a team would just suddenly run away with the game as Wurzburg stayed on their heels struck back on a 11-0 run to take their first lead of the game 27-25. The run was started by brutal back to back three pointers from 19 year old German Daniel Urbano and Christoph Wolf. Wolf then struck back with points inside, Morris nailed a floater and free throw. That sudden run didn´t scare TV Langen, but motivated them to get their own run going as they scored three consecutive buckets to retake the lead 31-27. Nicolay started the run using his lightening speed getting out on the fast break scoring, Freer connected on a pull up jumper and Woody scored inside using his physicality. Wurzburg didn´t muster any more points from the field as Florida native John Florveus made one free throw and TV Langen got aid from Woody and Nicolay from the free throw line as TV Langen had the 34-28 advantage. “Both teams played good defense. TV Langen did a good job containing Donovan Morris. Wurzburg stayed in the game because they were defending well”, added Igor Starcevic. TV Langen was shooting 46% from the field and 33% from the three point line while TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy was shooting 32% from the field and 27% from the three point line. TV Langen had the 23-16 rebound edge, but nine turnovers while Wurzburg had seven turnovers.
The third quarter remained tight until TV Langen could free themselves a bit near the end to get a higher lead. After more bricks and solid defense from both teams in the second quarter, the third quarter had more offense on the menu as shots started to fall at ease again. Wurzburg started off the third quarter on a 7-2 run to cut the TV Langen lead to 36-35. In the run, Wurzburg got key buckets from Morris on a coast to coast run where he caught TV Langen napping on transition defense and Florveus got an offensive rebound and put back. Wurzburg surely would have had the lead in the third quarter had it not been for Maxim Schneider who dominated the quarter and kept TV Langen ahead with his scoring touch of seven points, assists and steals. Alte scored in the post with a powerful left handed lay in and Schneider scored inside as TV Langen led 40-37. After a Florveus tip in, it was Schneider again who had the needed self confidence dropping a three pointer to give TV Langen the 43-39 lead. Wolf then snuck behind the TV Langen transition defense catching a baseball pass from Morris as Wurzburg trailed only 43-41. Then it was Schneider again hitting a very difficult of balance shot which was matched by a Wolf lay in as TV Langen still led 45-43. TV Langen then closed out the third quarter with a crushing 9-2 run to lead 54-45 after three quarters. In the run TV Langen got various help as Schendier set up Nicolay with a no look pass, then Schneider found Woody for a bucket, Alte scored inside and Raebel hit a jumper. “Schneider really was playing well and was attacking the screen and role well and was hitting his jumpers”, expressed Anish Sharda. “Schneider was the reason why TV Langen was in the game. He controlled the game for 30 minutes”, added Donovan Morris. TV Langen was shooting 47% from the field and 30% from the parking lot while TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy were shooting 40% from the field and 25% from the parking lot. TV Langen had the 30-27 rebound lead and had nine turnovers while Wurzburg had 11 turnovers.
In the fourth quarter TV Langen fell completely apart as they coughed up ball after ball as Wurzburg took the chance to capitalize on their mistakes and regained the lead and never looked back. TV Langen started the fourth quarter getting two buckets from Freer and a Nicolay three pointer leading 59-49 and it seemed like they were rolling and would possibly get well into the double digit lead, but instead Wurzburg took advantage of the TV Langen turnover panic attack going on a back breaking 12-0 run to retake the lead 61-59. In the run, Wurzburg got two field goals from Morris and free throws and also got big buckets from Urbano and Florveus. Beuschlein continued to be an annoying thorn in the side of TV Langen as he made his third steal at center court and going coast to coast for the lay in. Woody then tied the game at 61-61 with a lay in, but Wurzburg wanted to play a complete quarter and slammed the door shut in TV Langen ending the game with a 15-5 run continuing to live off TV Langen turnovers. Morris scored back to back buckets while Alte hit a turn around shot continuing to demonstrate how well he has improved his low post game as his consistency showed. TV Langen trailed 65-63, but Wolf hit a huge three pointer and florveus scored inside as Wurzburg led 70-63 as the team from Bavaria was riding a 23-9 run. A Freer jumper couldn´t help as Morris hit four free throws and Wolf made a lay in as TV Langen ended the regular season with a 76-66 loss. “We switched a lot on defense and also did something on defense this season that we never did before. We were disciplined instead of gambling. We rebounded very well and helped each other on defense”, added Donovan Morris. “We got a bit tired at the end. They were pressuring us as we were them. We were worn out and they made easy layups. This was a tough loss and we have to bounce back. We have to show what we are made of now in the play downs. I think that we will bounce back”, warned Anish Sharda. TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy were led by Donovan Morris and Christoph Wolf with 19 points a piece. John Florveus had 15 points and 14 rebounds. TV Langen was led by Tom Alte with 13 points. Martinis Woody had 12 points and 15 rebounds and Maxim Schneider had 12 points. Benedikt Nicolay chipped in with 11 points. TG Wurzburg Baskets Akademy finished the game shooting 47% from the field and 29% from outside while TV Langen shot 42% from the field and 24% from outside. Wurzburg won the rebound battle 40-38 and had 14 turnovers while TV Langen had 16 turnovers.