2 Hrvoje Peric | Photo: Alessandro Scarpa
22/03/2018
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Peric wastes no time in Quarter-Finals, secures Top Performer honors

VENICE (FIBA Europe Cup) - Umana Reyer Venezia big man Hrvoje Peric needed just 20 minutes to make an impact against Nizhny Novgorod, being rewarded with Top Performer honors in the first leg of the Quarter-Finals.

The 32-year-old power forward from Dubrovnik put together a couple of impressive solo stretches, finishing the contest with 26 points, 4 rebounds, an assist and a block on 9-of-12 shooting from the field and 5-of-6 attempts from the free-throw line.

Despite seeing his minutes limited by foul trouble down the stretch, the Croatian player collected an efficiency of 27 and was the key cog in the Venetian side's 86-76 victory at the Palasport Taliercio.

His opponent, Stevan Jelovac, did his best to keep the game close with a 28-point, 12-rebound double-double, but Nizhny Novgorod will nonetheless return to Russia with a double-figure deficit.

For the second time this season, the sharp-shooting Serbian big man attempted a double-digit number of free-throws, going 10-of-11 from the charity stripe in a losing effort.

Jelovac had a league-best efficiency of 28 this week, but had to concede the Top Performer honors to Peric, as they are always awarded to a player on a winning team.

Meanwhile, Bakken Bears forward Jeffrey Crockett, Kenny Gaines of Juventus Utena and ESSM Le Portel guard Robert Golden rounded out the Team of the Week with exceptional individual displays.

Having racked up 21 points, 9 rebounds and a pair of steals, Crockett paced the Danish champions to a 76-62 victory over Le Portel in Aarhus on Tuesday evening.

Golden filled the boxscore with 17 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, a steal and a block, but could not prevent an unfavorable outcome of the first leg away from home.  

Juventus find themselves neither a winner, nor a loser after drawing the first leg against Sidigas Scandone Avellino 77-77 in Lithuania. Things might have been different, had Gaines not suffered an injury in the fourth quarter.

Before leaving the floor with what later turned out to be a torn Achilles tendon, the American guard had collected a game-high 18 points on 7-of-13 shooting from the field, while grabbing 3 rebounds, dishing out a couple of assists and coming away with 2 steals.

FIBA