With the Christmas goose digested and the new year celebration a little less than a week ago, it was time for the German Pro B to get rolling again as the 3 week layoff did seem to move along slowly even through the holiday season. It is always seems like a lottery with the Fraport Skyliners Juniors and FC Bayern Munich 2 as to which BBL license players will be present or not. It was a good bet that all Fraport Skyliners Juniors could be present because the BBL team played at home the next day against the Telekom Baskets Bonn, while FC Bayern Munich was on the road the day after in Weissenfels, about a two and a half hour car ride from Frankfurt. One of the hottest players at the moment in the Pro B is German FC Bayern Munich swing man Karim Jallow who had scored 20 plus points in his last six games averaging 25,0ppg and is always a treat to see in the Pro B while for Frankfurt one of their top players American Alex Fountain had been in a little slump as after scoring in double figures in his first 8 games has done it only once in his last five games. FC Bayern Munich 2 entered the game having won all three games in the young head to head competition in the Pro B with Frankfurt, while the Fraport Skyliners Juniors had been playing spirited basketball as of late having won four of their last five games. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were motivated and very focused to finally win their first game in the Pro B against FC Bayern Munich 2, but were rudely denied getting mauled 81-58 as their turnover disease of 31 paced the visitors to the victory.
After the victory one would have thought that all was good with the winners FC Bayern Munich 2, but apparently not as head coach Oliver Kostic disallowed Karim Jallow to talk to this reporter as the German was interrupted halfway through explaining the keys to the victory. “We saw that Frankfurt was weak without many players, but we took them seriously. We wanted to win big, but fell apart in the second quarter. At halftime coach got loud in the locker room with us, but that was expected”, stressed Karim Jallow. It is a shame that Jallow couldn´t talk more, but apparently coach Kostic thinks the Pro B is the NBA? After a few surprised faces had witnessed the abrupt departure of Jallow and Kostic, a disappointed Niklas Pons of the Fraport Skyliners Juniors explained the demise of his team. “We didn´t have the strength to win today. The second quarter was good, but we let up in the third quarter. We had a nice run at the end, but it was too late. We should of played like that earlier. We didn´t move the ball well and just couldn´t play our game. They defended very aggressively and we were irritated by them”, said ex TV Langen guard Niklas Pons.
The Fraport Skyliners Juniors had a small 8 man rotation as the guard terror of Garai Zeeb and Jules Akodo who produce 28 points per game combined were being rested for the big cup game against the Telekom Baskets Bonn on Sunday as was Isaac Bonga while Niklas Kiel, Richard Freudenberg and Tobias Jahn were all out. FC Bayern Munich 2 had a stellar 10 man rotation and had all their stars on board with Jallow, Ogunsipe, Weidemann, Gegic and Beyschlag. The giant hole that the Fraport Skyliners Juniors had to deal with turned in the favor of FC Bayern Munich 2 as they came out getting an offensive rhythm instantly and before Quantez Robertson of the Fraport Skyliners who is a regular spectator could sit down and gaze at the scoreboard, the guests were leading 17-3 and it seemed like it would be a long night for Frankfurt. Frankfurt was unable to uncover a real scoring option and point guard Niklas Pons and Alex Fountain were hit with two quick fouls which put a damper in the Frankfurt game. FC Bayern Munich 2 was doing a superb job spreading the ball as many guys produced. Austrian national player Ongunspire got the guests on the board first with a lay in, 2017 NBBL champion Nelson Weideman hit a jumper, ex Nordlingen guard Georg Beyschlag connected with a trey, Bosnian 200cm guard Amar Gegic posted up like a power forward scoring and Jallow also scored inside twice using his athleticism. FC Bayern Munich 2 was defending very aggressive and forced Frankfurt to 10 turnovers in the first frame and at times felt like they knew every play as their anticipation rate was at a very high level. On offense Frankfurt lacked self confidence and that massive scoring option. Frankfurt finally crawled out of their shell as ex BC Neu Isenburg forward Konstantin Schubert and ex USC Freiburg forward Cosmo Gruehn nailed back to back three´s to cut the Munich lead to 17-9. FC Bayern Munich 2 kept up the huge pressure on defense forcing more turnovers while on offense got a lay in from Beyschlag, free throws from Weidemam and a tap in alley-op from Jallow from Gegic to lead 23-9 after one quarter. “Frankfurt had a tough start with so many guys out. They needed other guys to step up, but were having problems with Munich´s aggressive defense”, stressed Quantez Robertson. FC Bayern Munich was shooting 42% from the field and 25% from outside and had eight rebounds and one turnover while the Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 30% from the field and 33% from outside and nine rebounds and 10 turnovers.
In the second quarter, the Fraport Skyliners Juniors showed real heart and effort crawling out of their hole stepping up their defense and going on a huge run to deadlock the game at the break. German Michael Fuss who doesn´t get much duty on account of the deep roster played 27 minutes and scored eight points got Frankfurt on the board with free throws, but Beyschlag retaliated with a trey upping Munich´s lead to 26-11. Then came the giant Frankfurt moment as they left everything on the floor ripping open an amazing 18-0 run to get their first lead of the game at 29-26. The play of the Fraport Skyliners Juniors of the first and second quarters was like night and day. Frankfurt made 10 stops and on offense just found a groove and never let up. The club got huge support from Alex Fountain who supplied nine points including two trey´s while Cosmo Gruehn was also vital as he produced six points and German big man Armin Trtovac who entered the game averaging 11,8ppg and 8,8rpg made a runner like a guard. Frankfurt took something from FC Bayern Munich´s game getting in passing lanes well and making almost everything very difficult for them on offense as their self confidence continued to rise. FC Bayern Munich 2 completely lost their rhythm, but also missed some easy shots they normally would have made. FC Bayern Munich 2 got Gegic free throws and a 15 footer from Weidemann going into half-time with an even game 32-32. “Frankfurt rotated better on defense and talked more. They had their hands up on shots, got in passing lanes well and rebounded better. They slowed down their offense and became patient waiting for the good shot. They also got to the free throw line and Alex Fountain got them going”, stressed ex Auburn guard Quantez Robertson. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 44% from the field and 40% from the three point line and had 18 rebounds and 13 turnovers. FC Bayern Munich 2 was shooting 35% from the field and 25% from the three point line and had 14 rebounds and seven turnovers.
In the third quarter there was no continued excellent play by the Fraport Skyliners Juniors, but the expected stellar play of FC Bayern Munich as they got back to playing their game and just used the advantage of the higher talent level. FC Bayern Munich cruised out on a 10-0 run and stopped the Fraport Skyliners Juniors on their first six possessions. FC Bayern Munich mixed it up on offense getting a transition bucket from Weidemann, a trey from Jallow, 15 footer from Beyschlag as well as free throws from Ogunspie. FC Bayern Munich 2 had a solid rhythm on offense and were sharing the ball well and most important were hitting the ocean again as they were far from it in the second quarter. Frankfurt´s game had lost it´s rhythm on offense as it became more stagnant and their defense was too soft. Fuss finally got Frankfurt on the board for the first time in the second half with an aggressive penetration to the hole. But Frankfurt had no other scoring options that executed. FC Bayern Munich 2 continued to pour on the offense as Ogunsipe made an offensive rebound and put back and Jallow scored inside for the 49-35 advantage. Frankfurt finally got a free throw from Fuss as there continued to be no other offensive bright spot in this phase. Gruehn got active on offense and got a few buckets, but it wasn´t enough as they couldn´t contain the potent FC Bayern Munich attack. Weidemann hit another trey as he was their team´s best shooter at 47% from outside coming into the game and Jallow made a steal and hard two handed dunk. Beyschlag put an exclamation mark on the third quarter with a pull up jumper as FC Bayern Munich led 58-43. “Munich was just very well prepared for us. It seemed like they almost knew our plays. We tried to make adjustments, but nothing worked”, added Niklas Pons. FC Bayern Munich 2 was shooting 40% from the field and 24% from the parking lot and had 20 rebounds and 11 turnovers while the Fraport Skyliners Juniors were shooting 48% from the field and 36% from the parking lot and had 25 rebounds and 26 turnovers.
In the fourth quarter FC Bayern Munich 2 would lead by as much as 33 points, only to see it cut down by a big Frankfurt run making the final tally not look as bad at the end. FC Bayern Munich 2 were rolling, but wanted to have more and reeled off a huge 19-1 run to begin the fourth quarter extending their lead to 77-44. In the run the difference was Beyschlag who really found his groove and concentration in the BCM gym connecting on three three´s as each shot had that pretty rainbow touch to it. Jallow added five points, Ogunsipe added a lay in as did little used German Matthias Binapfel who got a pretty shovel pass from Gegic. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors didn´t totally lay down and die, but had another good phase storming out on a 14-0 run cutting Munich´s lead down to 77-58. Frankfurt did a good job getting to the free throw line as Fountain, 17 year old Alvin Onyia, Konstantin Schubert and 18 year Felix Hecker all connected. Hecker who was top scorer in the NBBL last season at 28,ppg also dropped a trey. But that was all the energy that Frankfurt had left as FC Bayern Munich 2 gót a Weidemann free throw and little used 2017 NBBL champion Bruno Vrcic closed out the successful Bavarian evening with a trey. “We played better at the end. We played together, moved the ball well and got to the free throw line. They let up a bit”, added Niklas Pons. “We didn´t play tough enough, but were too soft. I feel that we were really missing the experience of Zeeb and Akodo. We missed some of that calmness in our game. Akodo would have brought us that”, added Alex Fountain. FC Bayern Munich 2 were led by Karim Jallow with 28 points, six rebounds, three assists and seven steals. Georg Beyschlag added 21 points, five assists and six steals. Nelson Weidemann added 12 points. The Fraport Skyliners Juniors were led by Alex Fountain with 17 points. Cosmo Gruehn added 13 points. FC Bayern Munich shot 42% from the field and 33% from outside and had 30 rebounds and 13 turnovers while the Fraport Skyliners Juniors shot 43% from the field and 31% from outside and had 33 rebounds and 31 turnovers.