Despite playing inspired and strong basketball for 30 minutes in game one against FC Bayern Munich, the Fraport Skyliners fell victim for 40 minutes to the aggressive crashing of the offensive boards and overall better individual qualities of FC Bayern Munich and with fatigue being a factor in the fourth quarter, the Fraport Skyliners were unable to close out the game in a fashion they would have liked. However despite the loss, the biggest blow for the Fraport Skyliners was losing German national player Johannes Voigtmann who got a serious injury late in the second quarter ending his third season with Frankfurt in a most untimely manner. Game two in Frankfurt was technically not a do or die game, but in reality was because with a loss and being down 2-0 against Germany´s most famous sports team would most likely seal the semi-finals with game three being in Munich. With Voigtmann out with an injury and done for the season all he could do now was support his team as best possible from the bench, it now was the golden opportunity for baby twin tower Johannes Richter to give stellar inside basketball support something he has shown this season already in Eurochallenge play. Earlier in the season he scored in double figures twice against Danish team Baaken Bears and scored 15 points and six rebounds as Voigtmann was in foul trouble as he led the charge in the 74-64 victory. Richter disallowed any honey for the Baaken Bears as his play helped propel Frankfurt to the win, but now Richter had the biggest challenge of his career where he had to go head to head against American center john Bryant where the salaries between both players is as diverse as between a Lionel Messi and Felix Widwald of Eintracht Frankfurt. Richter was playing in his biggest game of his early career and the Fraport Skyliners didn´t want to go back to Munich with their backs to the wall, but they didn´t need Voigtmann as they crushed FC Bayern Munich 93-69 evening the series at 1-1. Fraport Skyliners head coach used the winning formula of small ball as the other big men had foul trouble while Johannes Richter wasn´t a factor and he took it in stride. “Every goal of a young player is too play, but we have very good players at the big positions. I just try to be ready and do what I need to be successful”, stressed ex Bamberg center Johannes Richter. In the first three games this season, the Fraport Skyliners played well for 6 of 12 quarters, but tonight they finally played a complete game and that showed with the result. “The team didn´t need me tonight. It was clear to see tonight that FC Bayern Munich didn´t play their best basketball. We played well for 40 minutes except for a short spurt of not being concentrated, but played with steam most of the game. Munich has the best players in the league, but they didn´t play as a team. We fought for one another and took advantage of their unfocused play”, said Fraport Skyliner Johannes Voigtmann. FC Bayern Munich seemed to never be fully in the game and just couldn´t get their offense going as Frankfurt demonstrated first class basketball. “Frankfurt played hard and brought energy and we could match it. We knew it would be a tough game, but we couldn´t do anything against them taking us out of our game”, stressed ex Alba Berlin forward Jan Jagla. “We missed a golden opportunity in game and now it is a best of three. We might have won 24 points, but that means nothing”, warned Oklahoma native Jacob Burtschi.
4,710 people were in the Fraport arena as Johannes Voigtmann could only watch from the sidelines as well as Konstantin Klein and head coach Gordon Herbert was back behind the bench after his virus infection. Georg Voigtman from Science City Jena was also in the arena supporting the team of his brother. FC Bayern Munich didn´t hesitate getting their offense running as they stormed out on a 11-3 run and lead. FC Bayern Munich wanted to take advantage with the void of the injured Voigtmann as ex ratiopharm Ulm center John Bryant was a beast in the paint getting a lay in, fade away jumper and offensive rebound and put back. Nihad Djedovic nailed free throws and Vasilije Micic full ended a coast to coast lay in Justin Cobbs made the only field goal in this run with a floater. FC Bayern Munich was defending at their best limiting Frankfurt to hard shots and made the pick and roll non-existent. However as often is the case in basketball, fortunes can turn for the better for a team out of nothing as the Fraport Skyliners finished the first half with a 14-3 run to lead 17-14. The Fraport Skyliners got that three pointer from Quantez Robertson which sparked their game. After that they kept consistency in their game inside out as Brooklyn native Sean Armand fed Florida native Mike Morrison for the crushing two handed dunk, California native Justin Cobbs scored transition points, Canadian Aaron Doornekamp buried a three pointer and Armand closed out the first quarter in fine fashion waiting in the corner getting the ball and waiting for Anton Gavel to fly by him and then positioning his feet for the buzzer beater three pointer as the arena erupted. “Frankfurt made the best of the absence of Johannes Voigtmann. Barthel and Morrison did a good job for Voigtmann, Frankfurt also played good small ball and got out on the transition”, stressed Science City Jena center Georg Voigtmann. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 43% from the field and 33% from outside while FC Bayern Munich was shooting 42% from the field and 0% from outside. FC Bayern Munich had the 10-6 rebound edge, but four turnovers and Frankfurt had three turnovers.
The second quarter was very tight and exciting as there were four lead changes and no team could break away for the bigger lead. FC Bayern Munich broke out on a quick 5-0 run to take the lead again21-17 as ex Penn State forward Jan Jagla dropped a three pointer Vladimir Stimac made a lay in and free throw. Then it was the time for Morrison to make big energy points as Cobbs couldn´t break free from the double team well, but found the big men and he skipped to the hoop with the two hand dunk finishing like a point guard. Jagla then made an offensive rebound and put back something which has haunted Frankfurt the whole series. Robertson then dropped another three pointer to tie the game at 22-22. Schaffartzik and Robertson then traded three pointers to tie the score at 25-25. FC Bayern Munich then recaptured the lead again as Bryant made free throws and then went over the double team of Doornekamp and Richter and finishing very high off the glass as Frankfurt trailed 29-25. Frankfurt continued not to allow FC Bayern Munich to break away as they remained consistent on offense as Cobbs made his bread and butter the step back and Armand connected on a floater to tie the game at 29-29. Frankfurt was an annoying menace on defense as their help defense was spot on and they were strongest getting into the passing lanes. Robertson then hit another trey ending the 7-0 run leading 32-29. Frankfurt ended the second quarter with a 6-3 run as Armand hit a runner, made free throws and Richter closed out the quarter with an offensive rebound and put-back as the Fraport Skyliners led 37-32. “There were many crucial referee calls in the second quarter. Tez sparked the team with many three´s and Armand was also a spark plug”, stressed Georg Voigtmann. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 48% from the field and 45% from the three point line while FC Bayern Munich was shooting 40% from the field and 17% from the three point line. FC Bayern Munich had the 18-14 rebound edge, but had eight turnovers and Frankfurt had seven turnovers.
In the third quarter, the Fraport Skyliners really opened up the game giving a shooting clinic hitting for 27 points and leading by 12 points after 30 minutes. The Fraport Skyliners got going fast going out on a 7-0 run to extend their lead to 44-32. Doornekamp hit a runner and Armand dropped a three pointer while Danilo Barthel and Cobbs only made one of two free throws. Then both teams went on little runs, but FC Bayern Munich couldn´t make any ground. FC Bayern Munich started the first run with ex Alba Berlin center Yassin Idbihi with an offensive rebound and put back and then Djedovic showed why his first step is deadly as he made an easy lay up to cut the Frankfurt lead to 44-36. However Frankfurt struck back with an Armand runner and Barthel lay in to extend their lead to 48-36. The 12 point lead for Frankfurt didn´t really stop as both teams executed well on offense as both teams were firing away. Djedovic, Armand and Micic hit three pointers, but Frankfurt still led 53-42. Down the stretch Doornekamp hit from outside as did Jan Jagla, but Frankfurt still led 61-48. An Armand floater and another Djedovic three pointer closed out the third quarter as the Fraport Skyliners led 64-51. “We as a team were able to find the open guys and got transition points as well”, added Quantez Robertson. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 50% from the field and 43% from the parking lot while FC Bayern Munich was shooting 43% from the field and 35% from the parking lot. FC Bayern Munich kept the rebound advantage at 27-25, but had 13 turnovers while Frankfurt had eight turnovers.
In the fourth quarter, the Fraport Skyliners out did themselves closing out the game in style banging home 29 points to get the series at 1-1. The Fraport Skyliners continued their offensive firing away going out on a 8-2 run to extend their lead to 71-53. Frankfurt head coach Gordon Herbert still had room for new plays out of his trick basket as he unraveled a touch down pass from the inbounds play as Doornekamp snuck behind the Munich defense getting back and Robertson found him for the slam dunk. Cobbs hit a three pointer and Barthel made free throws. Sometimes FC Bayern Munich can come back in a flash in which they give the ball to Bryant and he finished twice in a row with a finger tip role looking like an unbelievable agle and quick big man and three pointer as the Bavarian team crept back to 72-58. This may have been the strongest run by Munich in the game as they continued their run making it a 9-2 as German Paul Zipser made a runner and ex Bamberg guard Anton Gavel making a left hand lay in cutting the Frankfurt lead to 74-62. However Frankfurt didn´t have any bad moments at the end as they kept producing on offense as especially Justin Cobbs was on fire as he made free throws, a three pointer and a perfect ally-op pass to Mike Morrison extending the Frankfurt lead to 80-64. “My job as a point guard is too pick my spots when I get the opportunity I need to take it and just continue to learn with the flow. I have to know who is hot and get him the ball and that was possible with Armand and Robertson”, warned Justin Cobbs. Frankfurt was able to extend their lead to 86-66 as Morrison and Robertson made the arena cook with back to back two handed dunks. Bryce Taylor scored his first two points and only in the game in the 38th minute and something nobody in Skyliner nation will remember except for the California native on the bus ride home. With 1,36 minutes to play and the game decided, Gordon Herbert inserted the German kids with Johannes Richter, Stefan Ilzhoefer, Kevin Bright and Max Merz. They mastered FC Bayern Munich closing out the game with a 5-1 run as Richter hit a mid-distance jumper and ex Vaderbilt guard Kevin Bright set a harsh explanation point with a three pointer as the 93-69 crushing was the first win of Black Tuesday as two hours later FC Bayern Munich beat FC Barcelona 3-2, but didn´t qualify for the Euroleague final. There was also some heated trash talk between Jacob Burtschi and Svetislav Pesic and Heiko Schaffartzik. “Pesic was getting on Doornekamp and I came over and told him to stop and sit down and Schaffartzik then told me to sit down. They better know I have Air Force moves so they better not mess with me”, joked ex Air Force player Jacob Burtschi. “We stayed with Frankfurt in the first half, but in the second half we didn´t play the way we wanted to. They simply played better than we did and we have to change it in game three”, warned Anton Gavel. “We knew that they would try to make a run. We made shots, free throws and easy lay ups. We rebounded better than in Game one. We watched much film and boxed out better in game two not letting the long rebounds up”, added Quantez Robertson.
The Fraport Skyliners were led by Justin Cobbs with 18 points and six assists and Sean Armand with 18 points. Quantez Robertson added 16 points and Mike Morrison 14 points. FC Bayern Munich was led by John Bryant with 16 points. Nihad Djedovic contributed 14 points and Jan Jagla 12 points. The Fraport Skyliners finished shooting 52% from the field and 43% from outside while FC Bayern Munich finished shooting43% from the field and 35% from outside. Frankfurt won the rebound duel 34-31 and had 10 turnovers while FC Bayern Munich had 17 turnovers. This was the most perfect game that the Fraport Skyliners played against Fc Bayern Munich and was always flowing on both ends of the court. “We wanted to get open shots tonight as Gavel and Djedovic do a good job getting out on the wings. We wanted it more on the boards than they did. We knew that without Voigtmann and Klein we had two play two levels higher and we did that. It makes it a lot easier to continue hitting shots when your doing that. On defense we did a better job taking away what they are good at. We also were lucky to get Savanovic into foul trouble. We played aggressive and took away their option”, stated Jacob Burtschi. Game three is in 48 hours and this is the early do or die game for the Fraport Skyliners. “We need rest now because we have a short rotation. The key will be to execute better and get stops better than them”, warned Justin Cobbs.