Lokomotiv Kuban ended the VTB United League regular season with two away games. The Khimki game was very important for the situation in the standings, while the Nizhny game was a kind of preparation before play-offs. Loko used all its leaders in the final regular game, except for Kulagin and Antipov who stayed in Krasnodar with injuries.
From the very beginning of the game, Krasnodar looked more confident than the opponent who talked to judges a lot. Jelovac was the most persistent in that and got a technical foul. Babb netted the free throw successfully. Chris shot 5 free throws and 1 two-pointer. But he failed to score from downtown (0/3) and ended the game with 7 points.
In the second quarter, Krasnodar couldn’t improve its advantage. However, Brian Qvale showed confident playing and successfully attempted all his scots, getting 8 points and 1 steal.
By the mid of the third quarter, Loko’s advantage grew to 10 points but a series of turnovers in the end of the period let Nizhny organize comeback. Strebkov and Gubanov reduced the gap to 6 points.
In the fourth period, Nizhny Novgorod tied the score and even took the lead for the first time since the first quarter. Lokomotiv tried to catch up the hosts. Nizhny could win the game in regulation but Jonas Maciulis’ steal didn’t allow it do that. The score was tied. Ragland failed to score under the rim and the game turned into overtime.
In overtime, Nizhny quickly netted two shots from downtown. Ilnitsky shot two, Ragland added from the free throw line but Loko failed to attempt three-pointers successfully (2/14). Nizhny’s advantage grew to 4 points one minute before the end of overtime, Loko tried to reduce the pace of the game but the opponent didn’t make serious mistakes – 86:92 – Loko was defeated.
Lokomotiv Kuban will play against Khimki in the first game of play-offs on May 23rd in Krasnodar.