Follow FIBA on Facebook
Stojanovski and Trajkovski give Romania rude awakening in Skopje
SKOPJE (FIBA EuroBasket 2021 Pre-Qualifiers) - The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia completed a perfect window, cruising to a 90-76 triumph against Romania, who quickly learned how tough of a job they have in Group B of the Pre-Qualifiers.
Turning Point: The teams traded buckets for a quarter-and-a-half, but with the score close at 31-30, Vojdan Stojanovski and Bojan Trajkovski created a 9-0 run that saw the hosts climb to double digits. They never looked back, building a lead as large as 16 points.
Stats Don't Lie: MKD usually are dominant on the inside when Richard Hendrix is in the lineup, his 14 points and 7 rebounds aren't as impressive as the +19 that his team built with him on the floor. When you add Bojan Trajkovski's 21 points to the mix, it's easy to understand how MKD had a 48-31 rebounding advantage, and a 48-36 edge in points in the paint.
Game Hero: Vojdan Stojanovski should get a statue somewhere around the arena in Skopje. No slowing down, 21 points, 13 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals for the MKD talisman.
Game Notes: MKD are now 2-0 in the group, Romania and Kosovo at 0-1. Both MKD and Romania will host Kosovo in the next Window.
They Said: "The hardest thing to do is to win a game that has already been won, if you consider that we were named as the stronger team before the match. We worked hard so that we win for sure when we step out on the court. We didn't start as powerful as we wanted to. We played stiff for the first five minutes and we had some issues with the offensive rebounding of the opponent. We knew that they are physically prepared. We closed their space during the second half and managed to deal with them. The victory is well deserved considering that not all of our players were prepared as I would want them to be. We had to calculate the form so that we win both games. We still have a lot of work to do." - Jordanco Davitkov, MKD head coach
"We started a little bit slow. We wanted to secure the win as soon as possible. We were dominant in the second half and had a big advantage with a lot of time left. It was an important win, and with a double digits margin. I hope that we repeat this success in Romania a couple of months from now." - Aleksandar Kostoski, MKD
"Congratulations for the home team. Obviously they deserved this win especially that we had some moments that show our lack of experience. They are the type of team that knows how to punish that. The other important point is that they completely outrebounded us to create the advantage. Probably our missed open three-pointers cost us the game. The points margin will be difficult to overcome in Romania." - Tudor Costescu, Romania head coach
"We knew that it was going to be a tough game from the beginning. We knew that they are a more experienced team than us. We had some goals from the beginning of the game and some advantages that we had to take but failed to do in some parts of the game. In some moments we looked good and we were faster but we lacked points the whole game. That was the small detail that cost us the victory." - Nicolae Nicolescu, Romania