San Lorenzo faces team obstacles on path to BCLA final
BUENOS AIRES (Argentina) - San Lorenzo crossed many obstacles to earn their spot at the Basketball Champions League Americas Semi-Final. In recent years, the Cyclones have dominated Argentine and continental basketball. Now they have their eyes set on a new goal, reaching the BCLA final.
The Cyclones face a difficult challenge against Quimsa from Santiago del Estero in Game 3 of the Semi-Final. They had already met at the Super 20 in the Argentine National League. In the first game Quimsa shined in Buenos Aires with a 91-84 victory, but San Lorenzo then recovered to win 100-87 and force a Game 3. A game in which will be played exactly 227 days later to define who reaches the next level.
San Lorenzo, now led by Silvio Santander, will not have many of its role players since they are playing abroad due to the pandemic. Among them are Nicolás Aguirre and Marcos Mata, Facundo Piñero, Luciano González (he went to Flamengo). The team was able to recover Dar Tucker who emerges as a great figure, plus they count on the experience of José Vildoza and Máximo Fjellerup, and the reinforcements of Jonathan Maldonado and José Defelippo.
"I think we're all in the same situation, it's 40 minutes in which strategy and tactics get a bit sidelined and other factors come into play. It's different than drawing it to a playoff series, so anything can happen. It's one night and on neutral ground, hopefully we can get there in the best way", said coach Santander.
San Lorenzo went undefeated in Group A in the first phase. With four wins and no losses, the Cyclones held off Mogi das Cruzes from Brazil and Biguá from Uruguay. They had solid success in San Pablo (82-78) and Montevideo (97-91).
In their two home games, the Cyclones dominated against Mogi (107-78) scoring 70 points in the first half and had the luxury of resting star players against Bigua (104-88).
San Lorenzo’s head coach Facundo Müller left in the middle of the season and Néstor García took his place. Garcia made his debut in the quarterfinal against Franca. It was one of the most impressive series of the competition as Facundo Piñero’s buzzer beater in Game 3 led San Lorenzo to the Semifinals. The first game went 75-59 for the Brazilians, the second 91-76 for San Lorenzo and the third, with that tremendous finish, was 75-73 at the Roberto Pando Sports Center.
In Obras Sanitarias (Buenos Aires) will be the defining crossroads, to find out who will be in the Final of 30 at the Antel Arena (Montevideo).