The last two months were very special for the Fraport Skyliners as they built a club record 13 game winning streak as hearing anything negative about the team play was about as far away as it is for Fraport Skyliner point guard Jordan Theodore not wishing for some more pairs of sneakers for Christmas. The 2004 Beko BBL winner Fraport Skyliners beat up on the Brose Baskets Bamberg and FC Bayern Munich in their living room and made it as uncomfortable there for them as it is for Ricky Easterling on the parking lot in any basketball arena. Basketball life for the Fraport Skyliners was just good as they were playing amazing unselfish team basketball, had an uncanny ability of getting stronger in the fourth quarter acquiring a special energy that no their team possessed and head coach Gordon Herbert was the front runner for coach of the year. With their winning streak going on, they could keep tabs how the Golden State Warriors were doing in their quest to keep winning and not losing, but then 10 days ago their winning streak was finally snapped as big powerhouse Alba Berlin came into their living room, but got all cozy around the fire, while the Fraport Skyliners were forced into a cold corner feeling very lonely and without any answers for the guard tandem of Cherry and Taylor. Frankfurt was unable to bounce back on the road in Ulm and start a new winning streak as they were without Jordan Theodore who had a hamstring injury and lost again while on the same night the Golden State Warriors also lost their first game of the season ending their 24 game winning streak. However the Fraport Skyliners still have the last laugh and while Steph Curry and co were already dreaming of a perfect 84-0 season, Frankfurt technically still have a winning streak as they now arrive in stage 2 of the international Europe cup with a perfect 6-0 record and were looking for their 7th win in a row as they met up with 10 time Swedish champion Sodertalje who also had their 10 game winning streak stopped in the the Basketligan and like Frankfurt were riding a two game losing streak and had been heavily embarrassed last weekend by Uppsala 90-49. Both teams were looking to start a new winning streak and it was as expected the Fraport Skyliners that upped their perfect Europe Cup record to 7-0 with a decisive crushing 95-64 victory. Frankfurt had an unstoppable offense where they totally wore down Sodertalje inside dominating the points in the paint 50-24 and at times the game looked like a practice game and John Little best friend and Skyliners good luck charm Jason Boone was more than impressed as well who had an off night visiting from Ludwigsburg. “It is never easy to stay focused and hungry when you lead by so much, but it was good to see that Frankfurt did. Frankfurt didn´t play their best, but whenever Sodertalje tried to make a run, Frankfurt answered right away and never allowed them back into the game. The way they have been playing their success has also trickled down to this competition. I know how bad John Little wants to win and he will keep the team motivated to keep the Europe Cup winning streak going as long as possible”, stressed 2010 Eurochallenge winner Jason Boone. For Swedish team Sodertalje, they gave a great fight, but had no chance inside as Frankfurt took advantage of their weak spot as they had no answer how to minimize Frankfurt easy baskets inside. “We knew it would be tough without our big man Adam Ramstedt and top scorer Toni Bizaca, but that is no excuse for losing. We were physically dominated for 40 minutes. We fought hard, but that just isn´t good enough when you play against a good team like Frankfurt”, stressed 2015 Danish champion with Horsens Skyler Bowlin. Top scorer of the game Johannes Voigtmann didn´t really want to talk winning streak, but knows that whatever it takes to make coach Gordon Herbert happy is best. “We played good defense, tempo and fast break basketball which led to easy baskets often. We took advantage of the physical advantage and had good ball movement. We basically did what we needed to do and it fell easy to us. We don´t try to think about the winning streak that much even if we have stressed that we want to win the cup. We just go game by game and know if we win it is better since coach is in a better mood then”, smiled Fraport Skyliners center Johannes Voigtmann.
In front of a scarce crowd of 500 people, the Fraport Skyliners had to come to terms without starting point guard Jordan Theodore who had a hamstring injury and Tomas Dimsa and Max Merz who had ankle problems. Berlin native Konstantin Klein got the Frankfurt motion offense going fast with a back door lay in. However in basketball things can go so quickly as the 10 time Swedish champion rattled off a quick 6-0 run as ex FC Barcelona 2 player Niklas Spires who played with Orlando Magic player Mario Hezona showed his 210cm touch from outside and all time rebound leader at Kennesaw State Aaron Anderson made a tip in and free throw. Nothing seems to ever really to faze the Fraport Skyliners as without barely having lost a sweat, they then went to work going on a infectious 15-0 run to take the 17-6 lead. In the run, the 2004 Beko BBL champion dominated inside as Voigtmann made a turn-around jumper, Canadian national player Aaron Doornekamp a steal and lay in, Heidelberg native Danilo Barthel scored inside and Quantez Robertson made a hard two handed dunk. Then it was Barthel again scoring in bunches as he connected on a ally-oop dunk from Klein and then dropped a three pointer which caught Sodertajle reeling for some air as they had to experience the explosive attack of Frankfurt. At the early juncture in the game, every guy was contributing as now it was time for ex Wurzburg guard John Little to nail a three pointer and then do a big man´s job sneaking inside and tapping in a Mike Morrsion miss as Frankfurt led 22-9. Then Sodertalje ended the first quarter with an important 8-3 run to trail 25-12 after ten minutes. In the run it was Latvian guard Davis Lejasmeiers who connected on back to back three pointers and Arizona native Aaron Anderson made a tap in. “Frankfurt clearly showed that they had the advantage inside. They couldn´t match up to the Frankfurt physicality either. Sodertalje could only score from outside something that they wouldn´t be able to hold for 40 minutes”, warned 2010 Eurochallenge winner Jason Boone. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 63% from the field and 40% from outside while Sodertalje were shooting 36% from the field and 38% from outside. Frankfurt had the comfortable 14-2 rebound edge, but four turnovers while Sodertalje had three turnovers.
In the second quarter the Fraport Skyliners were able to keep their 10 point lead as Sodertalje was still able to keep up with them on offense mainly due to Skyler Bowlin who had the hot hand, but couldn´t get closer because they couldn´t get consistent stops or solve the inside height problem that Frankfurt was giving them. The Fraport Skyliners jumped out on a 6-2 run extending their lead to 31-19 as fat on the game plan menu was to bang the ball inside as Voigtmann scored on the nifty feed from Little, Barthel was found by Doornekamp for the simple bucket and then it was Voigtman again with a lay in. Even if the Sodertalje Kings could start a run, it never lasted long. The Swedish team went on a 5-0 run as Bowlin connected on a trey and ex Davidson(NCAA) forward Chris Czerapowicz made a pretty runner in traffic cutting the Frankfurt lead to 31-24. Now both teams were going on mini runs, but Sodertalje couldn´t gain any ground. Frankfurt went on a 6-0 run as Voigtmann was the beneficiary in all three possessions making free throws, a 15 footer and lay in getting fed from Robertson as Frankfurt led 37-24. Sodertalje at this point had one main go to guy and that was Bowlin who´s vision of the bucket was getting bigger and bigger with each new basket as he carried his team on a 5-0 run hitting a pull up jumper and trey cutting the Frankfurt advantage to 37-26. Frankfurt continued to be able to rely on the German twin towers of Barthel and Voigtmann scored again and the German big man scored 14 of his 22 points in the second frame as Frankfurt led 43-3. Then Bowlin nailed another three pointer and Voigtmann made a tip in as Frankfurt still led 45-33. Then it was time for some Super Tez support as he nailed a trey and Lejasmeiers closed out the first half scoring with a quick lay in as Frankfurt led 48-35. Jason Boone didn´t have a notebook present to take notes about Johannes Voigtmann, but maybe he can store the vital scouting report in his brain, but the Lidwigsburg big man was more than impressed with the German and even made a bold statement about his opinion of where he ranks in the Beko BBL: “Sodertalje had no pick and roll and were taking desperation shots. It looked like it would be a 25 point win for Frankfurt. I played with Maxi Kleber in Wurzburg and he belongs with Voigtmann to the best in their age group. In my opinion Voigtmann is the best player in the league right now. He is so complete and will dominate at this level for years. He is so complete and can simply do everything. IF he wanted to he could of scored 40 tonight without breaking much of a sweat. I am looking forward to the game against Frankfurt on December 27th. Maybe Voigtmann will have ate too much Christmas dinner”, smiled Jason Boone. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 61% from the field and 31% from the three point line while the Sodertalje Kings were shooting 43% from the field and 38% from the three point line. Frankfurt continued to dominate the boards 23-9, but had seven turnovers while Sodertalje had six turnovers.
In the third quarter the Fraport Skyliners broke the game wide open moving their 10 point lead to a 20 point lead and just owning the paint area on both ends of the court. Sodertalje could still keep the Frankfurt lead to around 10 points in the first few minutes before the 2000 Beko BBL cup winner broke away for good. After Bowlin continued his hot shooting nailing a pull up jumper, then it was Voigtmann making free throws and Voigtmann finding Doornekamp back door for an easy lay up as Frankfurt led 52-38. Now it was time for Davis Lejasmeiers to show his total quality who shot 47% from the parking lot in Euro cup play last season showed his pin point shooting ability making a trey and unbelievable athleticism splitting the defense and scoring with an easy lay in and then getting into the lane with a burst of speed and finishing with a one hand dunk cutting the Frankfurt lead to 57-45. Frankfurt then closed out the third quarter with a back breaking 15-6 run to lead 72-51 after 30 minutes. Frankfurt scored three buckets in a row as Robertson and Barthel connected on shots from down town and the German also scored inside. Mike Morrison also showed support with two buckets inside and Doornekamp also got a bucket in the paint. Sodertalje´s offense was sputtering as finesse was playing a role as only Czerapowicz scored from outside and Anderson made a tip in. “We were missing some players and Frankfurt wore us down. Their big guys kept going hard to the basket and that was hard to stop”, added Skyler Bowlin. “I don´t think that they were tired, but we controlled the tempo. We were up by 13 and knew that they could get back in if they hit shots. Key was that we controlled the tempo”, added ex Seton Hall guard Jordan Theodore. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 65% from the field and 47% from the parking lot while the Sodertalje Kings were shooting 42% from the field and 39$ from the parking lot. Frankfurt had the 29-14 rebound edge, but nine turnovers while Sodertalje had eight turnovers.
In the fourth quarter, the Sodertalje Kings got more tired, while the Fraport Skyliners continued to execute their offense and extend their lead to 31 points and win the game with ease. The Sodertalje Kings got on the board first with an Anderson bucket as Bolin fed him with a lob pass. Frankfurt answered with a Doornekamp three pointer as Frankfurt led 75-53. The Fraport Skyliners then went on a 12-4 run to extend their lead to 87-59 as now making predictions if the team would reach 100 points could be made. In the run, Frankfurt was fortified by the stellar play of Mike Morrison who got 9 points as he made it comfortable in the paint area scoring three times and getting three easy baskets and Robertson also scored as the Frankurt cutting game continued to work to perfection as Sodertalje had no answer how to stop it. After Czerapowicz nailed a three pointer, the Fraport Skyliners closed out the game in style with a strong 8-2 run. In the run, Little and Robertson drilled home three pointers and Bartle scored on a reverse lay up as Morrison gave him another extra pass for the routine bucket. “We did a good job executing on offense. We have to credit coach for breaking down film and having us prepared well. We were ready for them. Our big guys made all the right plays. Our defense was superb as our big guys defended the paint well and our guard got out on the wings. Klein and Tez are both capable of playing point guard on offense and defense. We have so many guys that can play multiple positions and they both came in and played their role”, stressed Jordan Theodore. “Frankfurt were very dominant, but what impressed me most was how unselfish they were”, added Skyler Bowlin. The Fraport Skyliners were led by Johannes Voigtmann with 22 points, six rebounds and four assists. Danilo barthela dded 21 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Quantez Robertson contributed 14 points and five rebounds. Aaron Doornekamp chipped in with 12 points, six rebounds and six assists. John Little and Mike Morrison gave support with 11 points a piece. The Sodertalje Kings were led by Skyler Bowlin with 18 points and five assists. Davis Lejasmeiers had 15 points and Chris Czerapowicz added 10 points. The Fraport Skyliners shot 59, 7% from the field and 41,7% from outside while the Sodertalje Kings were shooting 40,3% from the field and 33,3% from outside. Frankfurt won the rebound battle 43-21, but had 10 turnovers while Sodertalje had nine turnovers.