09 December, 2022
16 April, 2023
24 Gabriel Giron (QRO)
09/02/2023
Game Report
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Libertadores lock up first place in Group A, Instituto go out on top


MIAMI (United States) - On the next-to-last day of group stage in the Basketball Champions League Americas, Libertadores clinched first in Group A, while Instituto treated their fans to one more win.

With the best-of-three Quarterfinals matchups now officially set, here's a look at who plays who:

- Franca vs Penarol
- Flamengo vs UdeC
- Libertadores vs Minas
- Quimsa vs Real Esteli

Here's how tonight's two games played out:

Instituto 78 - 71 Penarol

Instituto were able to end their final BCLA group stage on a high note, defeating Penarol 78-71 in front of their home fans in Argentina.

Penarol's bench scored 21 of their 39 first half points and several players got into the box score for each team in the first 20 minutes, as Instituto had eight players score, while Penarol had seven players.

Instituto picked up the pace and outscored Penarol 20-12 to take a six-point lead into the final quarter. After trailing by as big of a deficit as 68-56, Penarol went on a 15-3 run to tie the game, but Instituto then closed the game on a 7-0 run to seal their victory.

 

Luciano Gonzalez was the game's top scorer, finishing with 17 points along with 4 rebounds and 2 steals. The 33-year-old guard shot 5-of-11 from the field and 2-of-4 from three-point range. Tayavek Gallizzi, meanwhile, finished with 12 points, a team-high 6 rebounds and 3 steals.

A key stat of the game was Penarol committing 19 turnovers and Instituto scoring 31 points off those turnovers. In a game that was as close as it was, sometimes the game also simply comes down to putting the ball in the hoop. Instituto shot the three-pointer better and outscored Penarol by 12 points from behind the arc.

Instituto finish 2-4 in Group C and the team from Argentina won't be advancing to the Quarterfinals, while Penarol also finish 2-4 in the group. The Uruguayan club will face Franca, the first-place team from Group D, in the Quarterfinals.

 

Real Esteli 90 - 101 Libertadores

The top spot in Group A was up for grabs tonight, and Libertadores emerged victorious in the third and deciding head-to-head battle against Real Esteli.

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Libertadores started the game on fire, connecting on 6-of-10 threes in the first quarter and putting up 30 points. The offensive show continued, as both teams were shooting over 50 percent from the field after one half of play.

Real Esteli trailed by as many as 15 points but were able to fight back and stay within reach. Libertadores turned on their offense late in the third quarter and carried it into the fourth quarter to keep Real Esteli in their rear-view mirror.

Libertadores' frontcourt of Ismael Romero and Juan Tello took control and combined for 35 points, 16 rebounds and 6 assists. Romero was a force in the paint and threw down multiple highlight reel dunks.

 

Real Esteli had two 20-point scorers in Jezreel De Jesus and Davon Jefferson. Along with his 23 points, De Jesus had 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals, on 8-of-13 shooting from the field. Jefferson recorded a 21-point, 11-rebound double-double and 2 assists.

Thomas Robinson also put up a double-double for Real Esteli, finishing with 17 points and 11 rebounds.

There was a big disparity in bench points with Libertadores having a 48-15 edge. Tello outscored Real Esteli's bench by himself (16-15) and Branden Frazier was the second highest scorer off the bench with 13 points.

Real Esteli's 18 turnovers came back to hurt them, especially since Libertadores only committed 10 turnovers and also were +8 in assists (25-17).

Libertadores improve to 4-1 in Group A and will close out this final group stage against Honey Badgers (0-5) on Thursday February 9. The Mexican club now know that they will face Minas, the second-place team from Group B, in the Quarterfinals.

Real Esteli finish 4-2 in the group and the club from Nicaragua know they will play Quimsa, the first-place team from Group B, in the Quarterfinals.

 

FIBA