European basketball champion Olympiakos, hoping to repeat this year after a disappointing season in the Greek domestic league, got its third straight victory in the Euroleague, beating Anadolu Efes from Turkey, 78-60 in Piraeus, but Greek champion Panathinaikos got whipped 87-71 at Unicaja Malaga in Spain.
Olympiakos, shaking off its lethargy from Greek league play, ran away with an easy win, dominating the entire game. It was tough on the Turkish team, which is coached by Greece’s Vangelis Angelou.
Olympiakos took a big 24-12 lead after one quarter, showing what was to come as sharpshooter Vassilis Spanoulis led the way wity 16 points, while Matt Lojeski and Bryant Dunston, from St. John’s Prep in Astoria, N.Y. each scored 13.
Panathinaikos, fresh off an easy victory to win the Greek championship, fell to 3-3 in Euroleague play. Playing with star American James “Airline” Gist, the Greens stayed in the game for the first half and early into the third period before Unicaja started hitting long bombs to put the game out of reach. Ramel Curry was the top scorer of Panathinaikos with 14 points, all in the first half.
The next round of Euroleague games pits Panathinaikos against Olympiakos in Athens in another match of the eternal rivals. A fellow Greek team, Panionios suffered its fifth straight losses in the Euroleague, pounded by the Russian team Nizhny Novgorod, 80-67.