With the exception of always new injuries popping up in Fraport Skyliners land that tries to put a dent in the flow and rhythm of the team which is as unnerving as being sat on by Shaq after he had a meal at Mcdonalds, basketball life is pretty awesome for the 2004 Beko BBL champion at the moment. After the team had a big winning streak of 13 games in the first half, it then suffered losing some focus losing to ratiopharm Ulm and medi Bayreuth, but since that fateful December 23rd in Bayreuth, the club hasn´t lost since, having strung a long new winning streak of 9 games. In the last week, they were super impressive reaching the 2016 Beko BBL cup top 4 beating top Eurocup team EWE Baskets Oldenburg despite being without German national players Danilo Barthel and Konstantin Klein and then 4 days later in Europe Cup action were missing them again plus Canadian national player Aaron Doornekamp and whipped strong Turkish team Royal Hali Gaziantep 91-79 displaying that team feeling once again and just having other players step up for the injured players. With the win against Royal Hali Gaziantep, the Fraport Skyliners moved to 11-0 in Europe Cup play and clinched a berth to the next round. With all this basketball hoopla having happened in the last week, now it was time for the Fraport Skyliners to continue to work on that supreme basketball chemistry and continue to carve steady focus into their minds for each game. With medi Bayreuth entering into the cozy living room of Frankfurt, the club still had that last bitter 82-69 loss on their minds where they were out dueled by a hot shooting Jeff Xavier nailing timely three pointers, but this time around there would be no Xavier around to annoy Frankfurt with his precision shooting as he had been released recently. The Fraport Skyliners had revenge on their mind and there was no way they would allow getting swept this season and despite playing a less than satisfactory first half, the 2000 Beko BBL cup winner heightened their defense in the second half, never gave up and witnessed as Cincinnati native Quantez Robertson unleashed the complete freak athlete in crunch time leading the team to a come from behind 75-71 victory, which was their 10th in a row. After the game and a win, it is standard procedure to chat with American Jordan Theodore and get the full game analysis in a basketball Shakesperean manner and even before he has finished some Skyliners were already heading back into the locker room after the obligatory autographes with fans. The American was relived after getting the huge come from behind win against medi Bayreuth and as so often this season credited the win to the club´s never die attitude. “Coming in we knew that this would be a very tough game. We owed them for the first bitter loss in Bayreuth. They may only have 7 wins, but you can´t underestimate anyone in this league. The last three minutes were back and forth, but the way we played, you could see how much we wanted to win. When we were down 18 points, we continued to fight back and when we were down 12 points the same. We made the right plays at the end, got stops and never gave up. What we played was Skyliners basketball”, stressed ex Seton Hall guard Jordan Theodore. For medi Bayreuth having misfortune in two of the loses in the last three games was nothing new as they had combined lost to Bremerhaven and Phoenix Hagen by 7 points and against Frankfurt they let another nail bitter slip by. “I thought that we did a good job doing our game plan sticking to it for 38 minutes. The second half was our downfall as we continued to give up leads. We made costly mistakes at the end and when you do that to a good defensive team, then it is hard to win”, stressed ex Joensuun Kataja Basket forward Ken Horton.
Despite Germany facing off against Spain in the Handball world championships starting at the same time as the basketball contest, 4,790 fans decided to support the Fraport Skyliners instead of watching the other contest at home and they weren´t disappointed as they would see a poor start by the Fraport Skyliners evolve into a masterful finish as Quantez Robertson once again showed why he is the pride of joy of Auburn university on the basketball court in Germany. The first five minutes of the first quarter was back and forth as no team could get away from the other as there were 5 lead changes. Canadian national player Aaron Doornekamp got his stoke going early with a huge three pointer, but ex Central Conn(NCAA) American Ken Horton tested his 36,5% three point accuracy dropping a bomb from way down town and medi Bayreuth led 4-3. Quantez Robertson then got his freak athlete mode going early as he sped around Bastian Doreth and John Flowers giving Frankfurt the 5-4 advantage. Doreth then scored over Johannes Voigtmann as medi Bayreuth led 8-5. The Fraport Skyliners then reeled off 9 straight points taking the 14-8 lead as Johannes Voigtmann scored in bunches as he hauled in a lob pass from Robertson for the lay in, made a tip in on a Theodore miss and Philip Scrubb miss and the Canadian Scrubb then made a trey from the corner what looked more like a lob shot than anything else. Frankfurt had weaved themselves a nice little offensive grove and would continue to get production as they got big points in the paint from Robertson and German twin tower Johannes Richter off the bench as well as free throws as Frankfurt led 19-12. However medi Bayreuth closed out the first quarter not sitting back, but taking control going on a 6-0 run to cut the Frankfurt lead to 19-18 after 10 minutes. In the run, medi Bayreuth got massive support from ex NBA player Travis Leslie who made a step back jumper, free throws from ex FC Bayern Munich center Andreas Seiferth and a lay in on transition from ex Indiana St(NCAA) point guard Jake Odum. “The game was pretty even for the first five minutes until Philip Scrubb came in and Frankfurt got stronger on offense. However medi Bayreuth got some baskets on the pick and roll and on transition to come back”, stressed ex Lich head coach Igor Starkevic. The Fraport Skyliners were shooting 38% from the field and 25% from outside while medi Bayreuth was shooting 50% from the field and 40% from outside. Frankfurt had the 11-8 rebound edge and two turnovers while medi Bayreuth had four turnovers.
In the second quarter, medi Bayreuth really took off taking that good 6-0 run at the end of the first quarter and transporting it into the second quarter and going on a 18-2 run to have the overwhelming 36-21 advantage. Before Frankfurt even knew what had happened they were trailing 28-20 after ex Los Angeles Clipper Travis Leslie scored inside and oldie Steven Wachalski who took 8 years to reach the Beko BBL after six seasons in the Regionaliga and two in the Pro B served up his specialty of three pointers in bunches. Jake Odum had been key in getting the medi Bayreuth offense going, Travis Leslie had given the needed spark from the bench while Frankfurt was giving up too much free space on the defensive end allowing the opponent to wheel and deal in the zone. Medi Bayreuth continued to score at leisure as ex TBB Trier center Andreas Seiferth scored inside, Canadian national player Daniel Mullings scored inside and ex W.Virginia (NCAA) forward John Flowers scored in bunches as Frankfurt seemed lost, but for some reason never fully out of it despite being down 36-21. The Frankfurt offense looked like they were in pre season and as nonexistent as seeing Shaq shopping at a diet shop every day and there was repeated 1-1 play and a lack of concentration during the set play as too many turnovers were surfacing on routine plays. Where was that amazing ball movement that had been present the last weeks? However the Fraport Skyliners crept back into the game getting a little momentum in the last two minutes going into half time with a 8-3 run trailing only 39-29. The run was started with some fortune as Mike Morrison got a two handed dunk thanks to a medi Bayreuth turnover that landed directly in his hands. The rest of the six Frankfurt points were made by 2 time Beko BBL slam dunk finalist Quantez Robertson who went coast to coast for the lay in, free throws and another lay in getting the inbounds pass from Scrubb. “We played very well against Royal Hali Gaziantep a few days ago, but we look tired today and having Barthel and Klein out doesn´t help either. Bayreuth looked very fresh, were hitting shots, were very athletic and were aggressive”, stressed Fraport Skyliners U-14 head coach Igor Starcevic. Medi Bayreuth was shooting 56% from the field and 50% from the three point line while the Fraport Skyliners were shooting 34% from the field and 22% from the three point line. Frankfurt still had the rebound edge 17-16 and eight turnovers while medi Bayreuth had nine turnovers.
Medi Bayreuth kept the comfortable 10 point lead throughout most of the third quarter, but the Fraport Skyliers closed out the frame with an important 5-0 run which carried over into the fourth quarter helping build the comeback. Both teams got their offense going right away in the third quarter. Jordan Theodre who had had put up the big goose egg in the first half stepped it up nailing a three pointer and got support from an Aaron Doornekamp lay in, but medi Bayreuth responded with a John Flowers three pointer and Jake Odum lay in as Frankfurt still trailed 44-34. After Doornekamp used a mismatch to score inside, Frankfurt got three steals in a row from the guard trio of Robertson, Theodore and Little, but couldn´t get any points out of it getting denied three straight times. Both teams continued to trade buckets as Robertson and Seiferth scored, but Frankfurt was unable to get closer until near the end as Philip Scrubb was inserted. With medi Bayreuth leading 50-41, the Fraport Skyliners closed out the third quarter with a 5-0 run which got them pumped and ready for the last quarter. In the run, it was Scrubb who made a seemingly impossible lay in traffic that somehow went in and Doornekamp nailed a three pointer. After the win, Scrubb remained very humble not accepting any credit for his incredible lay in as being the momentum changer. “I don´t know if that basket changed the momentum, but our defense did”, added Philip Scrubb. “We couldn´t get stops in the third. Our rotations were too slow. When our rotations got better, they couldn´t get good shots anymore. I think that the Scrubb lay in gave us momentum and we fed off it as a team”, commented Jordan Theodore. Medi Bayreuth was shooting 51% from the field and 50% from the parking lot while the Fraport Skyliners were shooting 38% from the field and 24% from the parking lot. Medi Bayreuth had the rebound edge at 28-22, but 20 turnovers while Frankfurt had 11 turnovers.
The fourth quarter proved to be very exciting as there were seven lead changes, but in the last minute it was Jordan Theodore, Quantez Robertson and the Frankfurt defense that propelled Frankfurt to the victory. Frankfurt continued their massive come back going on a 9-3 run to reclaim the lead back at 55-53. In the run, the Fraport Skyliners were sparked by Quantez Robertson who scored over Leslie, Florida native Mike Morrison made two free throws and Theodore scored inside to tie the game at 53-53.. Whenever Frankfurt needs instant points, it is Theodore who has the ability like a Dashaun Wood did in the past in the 2010-2011 season to get important points off the penetration. Robertson then gave Frankfurt the 55-53 lead with a bucket inside. The game now would go back and forth with the lead changing almost every time down the floor. Ex Artland Dragon Andreas Seiferth got very active scoring inside twice, but Scrubb tied the score at 60-60 with a lay in. Despite the game being very tight, it wasn´t defense that reigned in the next possessions, but the three ball. Wachalski and Horton riffled home back to back shots as Frankfurt trailed 66-60. After a Theodore lay in which is his bread butter as of late, it was Scrubb who nailed two trey´s and Wachalski another as medi Bayreuth still led 69-68. After a Mullings and Morrison block, it was Theodore again gliding into the lane like the basketball conductor that is looking to get to his platform as Frankfurt led 70-69. “I wasn´t playing well the whole game until the fourth quarter. I missed easy lay ups, but with our backs to the wall and my team needing me, I finally made plays. I have been doing it my whole career”, warned Jordan Theodore. Horton then iced free throws as medi Bayreuth had their last lead at 71-70. Then everything moved very fast as the T and T show of Theodore and Tez took matters into their own sealing the win with an assist, three pointer and two handed slam dunk. Theodore had the clear lane, but in the last second kicked the ball to the open Robertson who drained the three for the 73-71 lead. “I actually wanted to dunk the ball, but Tez was open. Earlier in the season, I had the same situation against Wurzburg and passed to Little who missed. I have confidence in my teammates at all times and gave Tez the ball to make the shot”, added Jordan Theodore. “I thought that Theodore would go to the rim to get the easy two, but my man cheated on me so he found me. I stayed with the shot and knocked it down”, smiled Quantez Robertson. With 23 second to play, medi Bayreuth still had enough time to score, but then it was time for the ultimate Tez freak athlete explosion as he jumped in the passing lane got the steal and went coast to coast with the fierce two handed dunk letting out all that comeback frustration from the previous three quarters. “We know that Tez is a freak athlete. It doesn´t surprise anyone on this team. He is a very special athlete and person. He plays each possession as if it was his last. I want to be like him with his effort on the court. I have never seen a player give it his all on both sides of the court the way Tez does”, stressed Jordan Theodore. Long after the final buzzer had sounded and Tez had made the rounds with every other journalist, he still had enough play left in his comments after a stressful 34 minute day at the office. “My freak athleticism exploded at the end. On the steal, I was trying to deny Flowers the ball and from him getting to the hoop. When I saw Mullings block Little, I knew that I had to show everyone that I can still jump at age 31”, smiled Quantez Robertson. “Tez may be a freak athlete, but more importantly he is a great leader and we rely on him. He told us at halftime to step it up”, added Philip Scrubb. On the last possession, Morrison made a block and Robertson got the loose ball and flung it towards the other end of the court as time ran out. Medi Bayreuth had lost another close game and were disappointed, but still had enough power to express their feelings. “At the end we didn´t stick to our game plan and take care of the ball. We lost focus and poise which led to turnovers. Robertson hit big shots all game long. When a guy like that is that hot, you need to know where he is at all times”, added Ken Horton. The Fraport Skyliners were led by Quantez Robertson with 23 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals. Aaron Doornekamp added 14 points and Philipp Scrubb 13 points. Jordan Theodore contributed 10 points, eight assists, four rebounds and four steals. Medi Bayreuth was led by Andreas Seiferth with 13 points. Steve Wachalski added 12 points, Ken Horton 11 points and Jake Odum 10 points. The Fraport Skyliners shot 44% from the field and 35% from outside while medi Bayreuth shot 50% from the field and 50% from outside. Medi Bayreuth won the rebound battle 34-30, but had 24 turnovers while Frankfurt had 13 turnovers.