Hapoel beats Madrid 72-83!
A first-time finalist has written its name into European basketball history as Hapoel Jerusalem defeated Real Madrid 72-83
at the ULEB Cup Final in Charleroi, Belgium on Tuesday! Hapoel overcame the most successful club in European history to become just the second Israeli team ever to lift a continental trophy. Almost 2,000 fans from Jerusalem, part of a sellout crowd of 6,500 at the Spiroudome, danced in the aisles to celebrate Hapoel's victory, which was based on a monster third quarter that saw their game-long lead soar to 15 points. Madrid rallied to within 5 in the closing minutes, but then ran out of time. Kelly McCarty, voted the final MVP, led Hapoel with 22 points, Will Solomon and Doron Sheffer added 15 each, while Tunji Awojobi had 12 points and 10 rebounds. Elmer Bennett led Madrid with 22 points. In addition to becoming the second ULEB Cup titlest, Hapoel earned the right to participate in the Euroleague next season
( taken from: http://www.euroleague.net/ulebcup/index.jsp
Hapoel Jerusalem became only the second Israeli team to win a European basketball competition with an 83-72 victory over Real Madrid last night to take the ULEB Cup.
With the win, Jerusalem earned the right to participate in the lucrative Euroleague, alongside Maccabi Tel Aviv, next season.
Some 2,000 Hapoel fans who made the trip to Charelroi, Belgium, and thousands others who packed in to watch the game on a large screen at Hapoel's home arena, erupted into ecstasy when Elmer Bennet missed a layup with 38 seconds left, and Kelly McCarty, the game's MVP, grabbed a rebound and drew a foul to put the game beyond doubt.
"This is the happiest day of my career," McCarty said after the game. "We have achieved the unbelievable."
"The victory is for Jerusalem and for the whole of Israel," said Hapoel chairman Danny Klein. "We have worked for this moment for 10 years. The triumph makes up for all the difficult times we have suffered."
The game got off to a nerve-wracking start, as Doron Sheffer and Will Solomon picked up early fouls in the first quarter, which ended deadlocked at 15. Solomon picked up his third foul in the opening play of the second quarter, and Jerusalem appeared in trouble, but the inspirational point guard still found time to drill his third 3-pointer from downtown before heading to the bench.
Even without Solomon, who also lifted the trohpy last year with Olympiakos of Greece, Jerusalem made a 9-0 run to take a 24-15 lead.
Bennet came to the rescue for Madrid with a 3-pointer and two foul shots in the final minute to bring Real Madrid within four, 37-33, at the half.
Madrid brought on big men Pat Burke and Antonio Bueno after the break, but Hapoel was on fire with McCarty netting eight straight points to extend the team's lead to double digits at 45-35.
Solomon picked up his fourth foul, and Madrid came back to make it a five-point game at 45-40. However, McCarty and Sheffer rained in shots from three-point range to combine for 24 of the team's 31 third-quarter points as Hapoel went ahead 68-53.
Madrid pulled back to 75-70 with two minutes to go. Solomon then missed a 3-point shot, but Awojobi grabbed another key offensive board allowing Sheffer to drill a mid-range jumper.
Antonis Fotsis responded on the other end with two free throws, but when Bennet missed a driving layup, McCarty grabbed the rebound and drew a foul with 38 seconds remaining, sealing the win from the foul line.
McCarty led Hapoel with 22 points, while Solomon and Sheffer added 15 each, and Awojobi had 12 points and 10 rebounds. Bennet led Madrid with 22 points.
(taken frome http://www.haaretz.com