For the first time this season Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners didn’t return back home winless. It has been an incredible tough and long season for Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners as loses have been on the menu for the most part of the season. They finally won their first game of the season on the road in Nurnberg against the Tornado’s, but couldn’t keep up the momentum on the road a week later getting wiped out in Bavaria against FC Bayern Munich 89-48. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners met the 5-7 Science City Jena team who have had an up and down season in 22-23. They came to Frankfurt having lost 3 of 4 games including their last challenge on the road against the Tornados by 31 points. Knowing this must of given Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners a little more self-confidence having beat them. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners wanted to close out the season at home with a win, but had to accept the fact that it wouldn’t become a reality. As usual Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners dug a hole for themselves early and had to play catch up basketball all afternoon long. Their will and heart and fighting qualities were there, but their inability to slow down Raphael Falkenstein hurt them as he exploded for 37 points. ‘It was a tough game. Frankfurt never gave up. We had a cool head at the end and smart enough to pull out the win. We didn’t have our best game offensively. We are a shooting team and when our shot didn’t fall, we had to adjust and find other ways to score with the penetration. Our physicality and defense won us the game’, stated Raphael Falkenthal (191-PG-2005)
Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners began the contest as if they really wanted to win that first and last home game of the season leading 7-1. Dusan Nikolic began with a lay in which was followed by a lay in on transition by Hector Izquierdo who had a huge game on defense getting 3 steals and swatting away 6 balls and Alexander Lageman scored on transition getting the touch down pass from Izquierdo. But as so often is the case, basketball is a game of runs and Medipolis SC Jena struck back in a rude way going on a 15-1 run to lead 15-8. The duo of Falkenthal and Ben Koehler were instrumental. Koehler set the tone on defense with his aggressiveness as he would get 4 steals in the first quarter while also being fierce and getting to the free throw line while Falkenthal used his quickness to get easy baskets on the drive with 6 points. The guests didn’t let up and kept up the pressure and closed out the first quarter with a 12-7 run to have the comfortable 27-15 advantage. Falkenthal continued to be a force on offense adding 5 points while Koehler added 6 points with a lay in and free throws. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners couldn’t muster much offense as they had 9 turnovers. They did get a lay in from Lagermann and three pointer from Joscha Zentgraf. ‘We are a shooting team and our plan was to shoot but when shots didn’t fall, we attacked and got to the free throw line with success’, stated Raphael Fallkenthal. Jena shot 45% from the field and 20% from outside and had 9 rebounds and 3 turnovers while Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners shot 43% from the field and 20% from outside and had 9 rebounds and 9 turnovers.
In the second quarter Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners picked up their game and fought their way back into the game trailing only by 2 points at half-time. German Finn Schwaiger got Jena on the board first with a floater, but Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners then got some energy from their bench going on a mini 4-0 run to trail 31-19 as Viktor Malinowsky and diminutive guard Kenny Wefing scored. Medipolis SC Jena then got some support from Bench player Julian Rothamel who scored twice and Max Nwokedi also scored as the guests had the comfortable 37-22 lead. But the tide then changed as Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners closed out the second quarter strong cruising on a 18-5 run to trail only 42-40 at the break. In the run Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners. Lagemann was instrumental in the run doing everything possible scoring 11 points. He punished Jena with 2 three pointers, 2 lay ins and a free throw. His athleticism, quickness, smartness and offensive execution rate was a big help this season for Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners even if the club didn’t have success. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners also played more aggressive defense and all in all played with a high intensity and were able to control Falkenthal better in this phase as he scored only once. ‘We didn’t attack as much on offense and were less physical on defense. We knew that Lagerman is a good player and we tried to pressure him, but we let up’, stated Raphael Falkenthal. Medipolis SC Jena shot 38% from the field and 10% from the three point line and had 20 rebounds and 7 turnovers while Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners shot 52% from the field and 40% from the three point line and had 19 rebounds and 13 turnovers.
Alexander Lagemann from outside
Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners continued to fight, but couldn’t stay with Jena as the guests pull away in the second part of the third quarter and would never look back. Medipolis SC Jena began with a basket from Passarge as Falkenthal made the steal, fed Koehler who gave the shovel pass for the dime on the basket for the 44-40 lead. But Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners continued to remain aggressive and went on a 7-0 run to retake the lead at 47-44. Frankfurt remained in attack mode and got a transition bucket from Nikolic and lay ins from Lagerman and Izquierdo. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners continued to play with a high intensity and profited from the superb 1-1 skills of Lagerman as he scored 2 more baskets to keep Jena at bay and lead 53-50. But Medipolis SC Jena found a groove to close out the fourth quarter after 6 lead changes on a 16-6 run to lead 67-56 after 30 minutes. Jena shared the ball well and got good support from many as Ben Rothamel, Ben Kohler and Ludwig Bueschel scored. At the end of the run, Falkenthal found his touch from down town dropping 2 shots and Ben Kohler made a lay in at the buzzer. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners once again didn’t come to terms with the aggressive Jena defense as they coughed up the ball 11 times. ‘When Frankfurt’s coach got kicked out of game, that gave us an emotional push and made us stronger. I hit some shots at the end having extra self-confidence and extending our lead’, stated Raphael Falkenthal. Medipolis SC Jena shot 37% from the field and 20% from the parking lot and had 28 rebounds and 11 turnovers while Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners shot 49% from the field and 28% from outside and had 32 rebounds and 24 turnovers.
Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners upped their intensity again in the first minutes of the fourth quarter and crawled back into the game, but Raphael Falkenthal then took over and put the game out of reach for Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners may have felt an extra need to perform well for the departed coach Miran Cumurija who had been ejected after getting his second technical as they rushed out on a 8-0 run to trail only 67-64. In the run they got a clutch three pointer from Lagerman and Nikolic added 5 points as his drive rewarded him with points. But Medipolis put the dagger in the heart of Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners going on a 12-2 run to lead 79-66 and put the game out of reach. In the run Medipolis SC Jena got 8 points form Falkenthal as his drive got him to the free throw line 3 times and he once executed with the lay in. ‘I had a good day. I just kept attacking and getting to the free throw line. This was one of my top games in my career’, stressed Raphael Falkenthal. The guests also received 2 offensive rebounds and put backs from Bueschel and Lukas Passarge. Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners just couldn’t match Jena’s intensity in this phase and couldn’t tame the cleverness of Raphael Falkenthal. Time began to run low as Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners got some added support from Nikolic with a lay in and free throws to cut Jena’s lead to 83-74, but that was as close as Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners would get. Koehler and Falkenthal scored baskets and then the buzzer sounded. ‘Frankfurt still played physical, but we had good spacing and got easy baskets. They were in foul trouble and we continued to attack against their small rotation’, stated Raphael Falkenthal. Medipolis SC Jena was led by Raphael Falkenthal with 37 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 7 steals while Ben Koehler had 16 points and v was led by Alexander Lagerman with 30 points and Dusan Nikolic added 22 points. Medipolis SC Jena shot 37% from the field and 14% from outside and had 38 rebounds and 14 turnovers while Eintracht Frankfurt-Fraport Skyliners shot 48% from the field and 29% from outside and had 42 rebounds and 28 turnovers.
Tags : RAPHAEL FALKENTHAL, MEDIPOLIS SCIENCE CITY JENA, GERMAN BASKETBALL