There Is No Second Rostock For Jules Akodo Leading Eintracht Frankfurt Into NBBL Quaterfinals Past Munchen Nord 69-56

In the last weeks do or die games have been as frequent on the menu of the Fraport Skyliners as it has been witnessing many new exciting upsets in the 2015 March Madness. Following the Fraport Skyliners hasn´t been an easy task for those with weak nerves as the Fraport Skyliners made one of their biggest come backs in franchise history after being down by 19 points at half time in a do or die game against Enisey Krasnoyarsk, but somehow staying focused and powering home 60 points in the second half to get an invitation to play at the 2015 Eurochallenge final four and a chance to register the clubs third club title. Six days ago, the Fraport Skyliners Juniors of the Pro B had to face off against top team Rostock Sea Wolves in a deciding game three in the playoffs in hostile territory after winning a nail bitter at home in game two, but saw their season come to an end with a 102-81 defeat. On Sunday it was time for the Fraport Skyliners Junior team Eintracht Frankfurt to show what they were made of in a do or die game as they battled against Team Basket Munchen Nord after winning game one in a nail bitter at home 72-63 as Jules Akodo powered the team while in game two the Bavarian club sought revenge and got it buckling down in a do or die game and prevailing 74-67 as they had the break out game of 16 year old Oscar Leon Da Silva who had a monster game of 15 points, 15 boards, 10 assists, three blocks and an efficiency rate of 41. Eintracht Frankfurt was weakened without the services of 17 year old 2014 NBBL rookie of the year Niklas Kiel who couldn´t play due to injury again as he missed the whole series, but Eintracht Frankfurt didn´t need him as the club was badly outrebounded 42-28 in game two stuck together down low winning the rebound battle this time 49-30 and Jules Akodo had his best scoring game in Germany powering home 32 points. Akodo had bad memories of the do or die loss in Rostock and wasn´t prepared to lose again. “I have been in do or die games before and each time it is the same as I just try to be aggressive, lead the team and do what I do best score. I had a lot of motivation after the loss in Rostock and didn´t want to lose at home. Plus I wanted to give my injured teammates a chance to still play in the next playoff round”, stressed British U-18 national player Jules Akodo. For Team Basket Munchen Nord, they had a lot of energy and focus after forcing the do or die game and stuck close to Eintracht Frankfurt in the first half, but caved in in the second half as they got away from their offense after fatigue set in and were unable to control Akodo who hammered home 23 points. “Eintracht Frankfurt made many tough shots and we let down on defense in the second half. I give them a lot of credit as they played very well. I have been in a few do or die games in England, but I didn´t play a major role like I did now and there was more pressure now. This was my last junior game and a tough loss to take. I felt we did a good job in the series, but they got the best of us and were a hard team to play”, stressed Tema Basket Munchen Nord guard Liam Carpenter. With the Fraport Skyliners departing for a 5 day training camp in Mallorca, Spain there were few prominent basketball players watching the exciting NBBL game except for two Fraport Skyliners Juniors with Alaska native Kyle Fossman and California native Andrew Bock. Both teams started off with 5-0 runs which was started by Eintracht Frankfurt who got going right away as Akodo tested his 45% three point shooting percentage and hit a trey and 18 year old 195cm German Jamin Knothe connected on a step back jumper. Team Basket Munchen Nord struck back with 16 year old German Oscar Leon Da Silver who made a jumper and versatile 18 year old 205cm power forward Pakistani Salman Manzur drilled home a three pointer tying the game at 5-5. The game remained very close as no one could break away as there would be five lead changes in the first quarter. After 17 year old 201cm German Armin Trtovac made one free throw for the lead, it was Da Silver again getting the lead back 7-6 with a pretty spin move as he just got the shot off with the shot clock buzzer sounding. Akodo got Eintracht Frankfurt the lead back as he got aggressive inside with the penetration lay in and 8-7 lead. Team Basket Munchen Nord grabbed the lead back with a Carpenter three pointer and Trtovac tied the score with a lay in at 10-10. Trtovac then scored another bucket inside off the pick and role with Akodo and Manzur hit a runner to even the game at 12-12. Eintracht Frankfurt closed out the first quarter with a 5-2 run to lead 17-14. In the run it was 19 year old 194cm point guard Armin Musovic finding his range early with a three pointer and Akodo hit a runner. 18 year old 192cm guard Chris Wurmseher closed out the first quarter with a buzzer beater runner in traffic. “Both teams were very defensive orientated and played very aggressive. There was much contact and it seemed like the ref´s weren´t calling much contact”, stressed Fraport Skyliner Junior Andrew Bock. Eintracht Frankfurt was shooting 39% from the field and 33% from outside while Team Basket Munchen Nord was shooting 43% from the field and 50% from outside. Eintracht Frankfurt had the 12-8 rebound edge and one turnover while Team Basket Munchen Nord had two turnovers. The second quarter remained very tight as there were four lead changes, but Eintracht Frankfurt kept their noses ahead going in with the 32-28 lead at the break. Team Basket Munchen Nord came out going on a 4-0 run to steal back the lead 18-17. 18 year old 191cm guard Justin Hedley connected on two free throws and then they caught Eintracht Frankfurt off balance as they snuck in a full court press and Manzur made a steal and dished to Hedley for the easy bucket. However then it was Akodo who got an offensive rebound in the lane and made the put back for the 19-18 advantage. Then it was Da Silva who showed enormous shooting grace hitting a three pointer as Eintracht Frankfurt trailed 21-19. Eintracht Frankfurt then escaped on a 8-0 run to regain the lead 26-21. In the run it was Trtovac who was served off a platter from Akodo finishing with a massive two handed dunk. Then it was 18 year old Can Akbayir who hit a floater and little used American 18 year old Anthony Williams hit a three pointer. Eintracht Frankfurt was doing a super job with their inside out game and getting their big men involved as Akodo was exhibiting perfect playmaker qualities always making the right decision either finishing himself or setting up his teammates. Team Basket Munchen Nord didn´t let this run effect their comeback as they did a good job getting to the free throw line as Hedley and Carpenter connected to cut the Eintracht Frankfurt lead to 26-24. Then both teams traded baskets as 19 year old role player David Scheffels hit a three pointer and little used 17 year old diminutive 178cm guard Pinda Bongo made a jumper from the corner as Team Basket Munchen Nord trailed 29-26. 18 year old 201cm center Oliver Russ then hit a jumper, but it was Akbayir who has had the hot hand the last weeks in NBBL and Pro B that dropped a three pointer for the 32-28 lead. “Akodo was getting into the lane, hitting big shots and the team was moving the ball well. They also did a good job compensating the loss of Niklas Kiel with the other big men. I like the play of Da Silver. He is very athletic and once he develops more should become a good player”, added Andrew Bock. Eintracht Frankfurt was shooting 38% from the field and 33% from the three point line while Team Basket Munchen Nord was shooting 36% from the field and 43% from the three point line. Eintracht Frankfurt had the 23-16 rebound edge and both teams had five turnovers a piece. Eintracht Frankfurt slowly took control of the game in the third quarter as Jules Akodo really started to get going connecting for 13 points and got solid play from role players Akbayir and David Scheffels who closed out the third quarter with the last six points. Jules Akodo got Eintracht Frankfurt going making a steal and going coast to coast for the bucket and 34-28 lead. However Team Basket Munchen Nord didn´t let their opponent get away yet as they closed the gap again to 34-32 with a mini 4-0 run as Carpenter made a pretty pull up jumper in the lane and Hedley found Manzur inside for the easy basket. Eintracht Frankfurt then took control going on a 20-8 run to extend their lead to 54-42. Akodo nailed two three pointers in this run as well as a jumper showing his calmness as he picked his space and found nothing but net. Akodo scored 11 points in the run, but had some support from Akbayir nailing a three pointer and Scheffles who made a steal and went coast to coast for the two hand dunk and also contributed a bomb from outside. “We were aggressive in the first half and coach told us to keep being aggressive. We became even more aggressive. I didn´t plan to score so much and it just happened. I am always aggressive and just wanted to get my team more comfortable with a bigger lead. Scheffels and Akbayir helped as well with big shots”, added Jules Akodo. “Akodo hit some long three´s and we had a tough time defending him. He did a good job breaking down the defense”, added Liam Carpenter. Eintracht Frankfurt was shooting 41% from the field and 45% from the parking lot while Team Basket Munchen Nord was shooting 34% from the field and 36% from the parking lot. Eintracht Frankfurt had the huge 37-23 rebound edge, but eight turnovers while Team Basket Munchen Nord had seven turnovers. In the fourth quarter fatigue and Jules Akodo decided the game for Team Basket Munchen Nord as Eintracht Frankfurt continued to control the game and move on to the Quarterfinals against Ulm. Mansur got Team Basket Munchen Nord going with a deep three pointer from beyond the top of the key as they trailed 54-45. However the flowing Eintracht Frankfurt offense from the third quarter carried over into the fourth quarter as they went on a 5-0 run to extend their lead to 59-45 as Akbayir connected on a three pointer and Akodo made a step back jumper. Team Basket Munchen Nord never gave up and used their last bit of energy going on a 8-2 run to cut the Eintracht Frankfurt lead to 61-53. In the run the Bavarian team got two runner´s from Carpenter and Mansour and a timely three pointer from Bongo. However Eintracht Frankfurt then put the nail on the coffin with a 6-0 run to extend their lead 67-53 and sealing their ticket to the next round. In the run it was Akodo who hit free throws and continued to have his aggressive desire to reach the cup scoring as did Knothe inside. After Mansur free throws, it was Scheffels that closed out the game with a lay in. “We played good defense down the stretch and our rotations were quick. We shut down the paint and the bigs helped each other. Everybody rebounded instead of just the bigs in game two”, added Jules Akodo. “We were down by 10 and forced too many shots and got away from our offense. We got tired and relied too much on 1-1 play and our shots weren´t falling”, expressed Liam Carpenter. Eintracht Frankfurt was led by Jules Akodo with 32 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. David Scheffels added 11 points and seven rebounds. Team Basket Munchen Nord were led by Salman Manzur with 14 points. Liam Carpenter added 13 points and Oscar Da Silver 12 points and 10 rebounds. Eintracht Frankfurt shot 41% from the field and 38% from outside while Team Basket Munchen Nord shot 34% from the field and 35% from outside. Eintracht Frankfurt won the rebound duel 49-30, but had 12 rebounds and their opponent nine turnovers. “Ulm is a very tough team to match up against. They are pretty tall and have solid guards. It should be a great series Against Eintracht Frankfurt”, commented Liam Carpenter.

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