Reyer Venezia claim maiden European title
VENICE (FIBA Europe Cup) – Umana Reyer Venezia have claimed their first piece of international silverware, defeating fellow Italian club Sidigas Avellino 158-148 on aggregate score to be crowned 2018 FIBA Europe Cup champions.
Reyer Venezia turned out in front of their home fans on Wednesday night, already leading the tie 77-69, on account of taking the road win in Avellino a week earlier. Going into the half on the return leg, leading 41-32, the Venetian club had one hand firmly clasped to the cup.
However, Avellino rose to the occasion of the Final, coming out strong in the third frame to catch their hosts unaware and storm back to take the lead. But Reyer Venezia duly responded, regaining their composure to conserve their lead, eventually taking the second leg 81-79.
The victory caps a remarkable season for the Italian club, following on from their women's team – who were sat courtside Wednesday night – making the Final of EuroCup Women.
Reyer Venezia had previously been to the Final of the Korac Cup in 1981, and the Basketball Champions League Final Four last season, but on both occasions, came home short-handed.
European club competition action continues this weekend, when Athens, Greece plays host to the Basketball Champions League Final Four. In Friday's Semi-Finals, German side MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg play Final Four returnees Monaco, whilst local hopefuls AEK face off against Spanish rivals UCAM Murcia. The Third-Place Game and Final follow on Sunday.
FIBA (fiba.basketball) - the world governing body for basketball - is an independent association formed by 213 National Basketball Federations throughout the world. It is recognized as the sole competent authority in basketball by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).