Loko-2 wins bronze medals of the youth league

The Krasnodar reserve team defeated MBA-Junior (73:56) in the bronze medal game of the VTB United youth league.

For the second year in a row, MBA-Junior’s opponent in the semi-finals was Zenit-M, but this time the Saint-Petersburg’ team have won. There was a lot of drama: losing 18 points after the first half, Muscovites managed to take the game into overtime (79:79). And yet Zenit-M turned out to be stronger – 94:86.

As a result, the finalists of last season met in the bronze medal game this time. And at first it seemed that the teams had left all their emotions on the floor yesterday: the opponents started with a series of mistakes, and after a minute and a half there still were zeroes on the scoreboard. Then Artem Oreshnikov finally opened score with a mid-range shot. MBA responded instantly, but Daniil Ginko was also precise – 4:2.

Demid Tyulubaev showed great grit in rebounding – he literally dived for the ball, and second chances he created brought Loko-2 4 points ahead. However, the game was close until the first short break. There was enough beauty in this ten-minute period: a blocked shot by Oreshnikov, a dunk by Vsevolod Ishchenko, an excellent actions in the post by Artem Koryakovsky, a three-pointer by Daniil Ginko… However, by the end of the 1st quarter Loko -2 had to catch up – 15:17.

But not for long: Nikita Ryabov immediately equalized the score when the game resumed. This gave a start to a decent run – 10:0, forcing MBA-Junior coach Dmitry Ovsyuk to take a time-out. But that didn’t help to slow down the pace of Loko-2. Another interception by Gerasimov followed by a quick break and a dunk by Oreshnikov – 34:21, and one more time-out for the Moscow team.

Then the opponent then began to reduce the gap, and it was Ilya Kuznetsov’s turn to take time-outs. 8 seconds before the end of the first half, the gap shrinked to only 7 points, but Ginko scored a long-ranged buzzer and again regained the double-digit margin – 37:27.

However, the southerners kept in mind, that the day before MBA-Junior had revived even from a greater disadvantage. At some point, it seemed that they would succeed again: in the 27th minute, only 5 points separated the opponents from each other (45:40).

At the same time, Ishchenko, Sergey Shchetinin and Tyulubaev were on 4 fouls, which forced them to be careful in defense. The 3rd quarter ended with 3 free throws by Semyon Gerasimov, all of which he managed to score.

Due to that, Loko-2 started the final ten minutes leading 53:44. A couple of minutes later Tyulubaev tested the strength of the Basket Hall rings – 59:46, a lead with an almost bronze tint.

MBA-Junior continued to fight until the last seconds, but the gap was too big. 73:56 – Loko-2 is the bronze medalist of the VTB United Youth League! Bravo, guys! A well-deserved victory!

Andrei Vedishchev, the president of Lokomotiv Kuban PBC

Congratulations to our youth team! It's nice that this year also brought us medals. We lost the semi-finals to CSKA-Junior, maybe because of excessive desire. But overall they played well and fully deserve their medals. Thumbs up for the guys and coaching staff! My special words are for Vsevolod Ishchenko who became better game after game and showed great leadership. I think this guy has a good future and very soon he could get a chance to prove himself in the main team.

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