Sometimes when basketball life is going well and your winning, you just want to keep playing, but sometimes that isn’t possible as the Fiba Window has become a part of the world basketball schedule. It is moreover the team that are losing and have banged up bodies that take the Fiba break with open arms. Even if the EPG Baskets Koblenz are the best and hottest club in the pro B, the organization didn’t take any time off, but actually made their roster even stronger with the addition of German Leon Frederici who came from easyCredit BBL team MLP Academics Heidelberg. While the 1-5 Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg team took the Fiba Break with open arms as they had to digest the last 81-80 nail bitter loss to Speyer and find new energy for the next games. It definitely didn’t get any easier as they had to travel to the unbeaten living room of the EPG Baskets Koblenz and after 40 minutes, the guests went home having to digest a brutal 107-51 loss. The EPG Baskets Koblenz dominated on offense and defense for 40 minutes and with only a few lapses demonstrated that they live for consistency. ‘We played so well together today. We communicated blindly on defense and had all our match ups and switches were good. We had so nice ball movement. It was just beautiful basketball. I had to scream a few times on the court, because our play was so good. For anybody that couldn’t witness the game in the arena definitely missed something’, stressed EPG Baskets Koblenz forward Moritz Huebner. Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg had to fight an uphill battle from the start as they couldn’t match the intensity and physicality at both ends of the court and were rapidly in the hole. ‘There were 4-5 gears of difference in the level of play of both teams. It was actually fun to watch them. They have a very well known coach and great team. We weren’t ready to compete. We were too young and just need time’, stated Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg head coach Khee Rhee Young.
Alani Moore at the FT line
The guests arrived with a slim 9 man rotation which would have massive difficulty keeping their intensity up in the second half. Both teams came out ready as the contest was deadlocked early at 5-5. Huebner and Eddy Edigin had traded three’s, but then the EPG Baskets Koblenz just ran away and never stopped. The home team went on a massive 14-3 run to lead 19-8 and then it was apparent to witness that the guests would have a hard trek up the mountain to reach the peak. In the run they used their physical advantages and scored much in the paint area. German center Moses Poelking scored twice as did undersized big Brian Butler. Koblenz also got sufficient support from their guard play from Moore and Heckel who combined for 7 points. Butler also unleashed a pretty no look pass to woo the fans. ‘Not only is his passing underrated, but also his dribbling’, stated EPG Baskets Koblenz manager Thomas Klein. The physical Koblenz defense didn’t allow a fluid ball movement to develop which made Ludwigsburg opt for more 1-1 plays which they couldn’t execute on a consistent rate. When the guests did get 1-1 baskets, then from ex Rhondorf guard Esli Edigin who nailed a trey and lay in as Koblenz led 23-14. But the EPG Baskets Koblenz closed out the first quarter well going on a rapid 9-2 run to lead 32-16 after 10 minutes. In the run, Koblenz let it rain 2 three’s from ex easyCredit BBL player Dominque Johnson and American Alani Moore. New Koblenz player Leon Friederici (190-SG-1995) also added free throws. ‘We were dominant on offense and defense against a pretty good team. We had no lapses on the floor and when we subbed new players in. We played great team basketball’, added Thomas Klein.
Leonardo Kratzer from the corner
The EPG Baskets Koblenz kept up their dominant play in the second quarter and led by as much as 28 points. What fans saw in the first 4 minutes of the second quarter was a masterpiece of incredible play by Leon Friederici who came in and scored 9 unanswered points and 12 points in less than 4 minutes. ‘We await Leon to give us energy as well as giving us three point shooting quality as well as driving to the basket’, warned Thomas Klein. In that early second quarter display of excellence he showed more than that. He began with an incredible two handed dunk. ‘I knew he was athletic. But when you see him, you wouldn’t think he was athletic, but he has so much power’, expressed Thomas Klein. He then showcased his offensive play with clever inside out play with 2 lay ins and two threes as the EPG Baskets Koblenz led 47-19. ‘Leon was integrated very well. He only had a few practices, but in the game it seemed like he had been here since pre season. He had a great game. I like how flexible his game is. He isn’t just a slasher, but a team player’, warned Moritz Huebner. The experienced German finished with a smooth 18 points and 5 assists in 15 minutes. ‘I felt good. I know more than half of the team so it’s easier to get adjusted quickly. I’m more than just a shooter and defender. I’m not a bad passer either’, smiled Leon Friederici. Koblenz kept executing well, but the guests had their best span of the game notching 3 three’s from Edigin, ex BBL player Aenas Jung and young talented 17 year old Abdulhay Komurkara. Moritz Huebner led the team into the break with a spark making a hard two handed dunk as Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg trailed 55-30. ‘We lost some intensity at the end, but still played at a high tempo. We drove more in the first quarter, but began to hit more three’s in the second quarter. Our read and react strength showed the quality of players that we have’, warned Thomas Klein.
Brina Butler with pull up jumper
The EPG Baskets Koblenz continued to be aggressive at both ends in the third quarter and the guests began to lose energy as the 9 man rotation began to prove as being to thin. Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg executed well in the first minutes as Komurkara began to make good plays as he showed his sniper qualities from outside as he connected twice and Dutch forward Emmanuel Ugbo scored on a lay in traffic. But the guests couldn’t make any ground as Koblenz continued to run their plays on offense and score with ease. Heckel scored twice, Butler and Leo Saffer dunked and Friederici made a lay in as they led 67-38. When you have a deep roster and are subbing in frequently, you will always have a good chance of keeping the intensity up especially when you have so many offensive weapons. The guests were often a step to slow as their energy level was waning as 4 turnovers in a row suggested. The EPG Baskets closed out the third quarter strong with a 13-3 run to lead 80-41 after 30 minutes. In the run, the club received support from their bench as German Niclas Sperber added 7 points including a trey and dunk and Moore hit a three pointer as the Koblenz ball movement was rolling. ‘I thought our defense was a tic better than in the first half. We played very hard nosed. Our transition play was also very good. We continued to keep a good balance as every player contributed’, expressed Thomas Klein.
Emmanuel Ugbo at the FT line
Nothing changed in the fourth quarter as it was almost identical to the third quarter in terms of points and points given up. The EPG Baskets Koblenz led by as much as 58 points. The contest was already decided in the third quarter, but the EPG Baskets Koblenz just continued to have passion and began with a brutal 12-2 run to lead 92-43. In the run the ambitious team continued to have great output form many players as Moore made a lay in. That was followed by Yasin Turan free throws and a Poelking lay in. Heckel then added a three pointer and Hubner a dunk. After a Ugbo lay in, Koblenz got lay in’s from Heckel and Johnson to lead 96-43. The EPG Baskets Koblenz just didn’t lose their consistency. ‘Teams that are mentally strong and have a great team chemistry won’t have many let downs’, said Thomas Klein. After Jung nailed a three pointer, the EPG Baskets Koblenz closed out the game in top fashion going on a 11-3 run to win the game. In the run, Koblenz got 2 buckets from Johnson, lay in’s from Butler and Turan and free throws from young German kid Oluwadamilola Ade-Eri. ‘This was the best win of the season. Everybody fought hard. I’m overjoyed’, stressed Thomas Klein. ‘We kept a good level for 40 minutes, but you can’t forget that we played against a last placed team. We have to do that against better teams. Even when your near perfect, you do notice the small holes in the play’, stressed Moritz Huebner. The EPG Baskets Koblenz were led by Alani Moore and Leon Friederici with 18 points a piece while Marvin Heckle added 15 points and Moritz Huebner 14 points while Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg were led by Esli Edigin while Abdulhay Komurkara added 16 points. The EPG Baskets Koblenz shot 63% from the field and 50% from outside and had 38 rebounds and 8 turnovers while Porsche BBA Ludwigsburg shot 29% from the field and 32% from outside27 rebounds and 22 turnovers.