22.04.19 | UMMC prevailed in first two games of the Finals. Series score – 2:0
An acting Russian and EuroLeague Champion won first two matches of the Championship of Russia Final play-off series competing against Dynamo Kursk. Game 1 took place on April 20 and Foxes defeated the guests from Kursk -78:66 and left no chances for Dynamo in Game 2.
Both matches followed the same scenario. Three out of four quarters went on in a tough competition, while the second time period turned into a key moment when an acting Champion made a statement that founded a confident win in the end. Foxes provided the center players with maximum work, ran forward and covered each other’s back in the paint. Eventually in the fourth period, Ekaterinburg was up by 19 points. In the very end, Miguel Mendez’s team let the opponent go, however it did not stop the hosts from winning the second match of the Final series - 64:51.
UMMC center was on fire that night and ended up with 21 points and 7 rebounds. Kayla McBride showed the best efficiency and came up with 18 points, 6 assists, 6 rebounds and 5 steals. Brittney Griner harvested another double-double – 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Dynamo Kursk answered with 12 points from Epiphanny Prince.
UMMC center Emma Meesseman:
- It was a hard game, tough one. We showed that we fought through it and showed that in this season we were capable to win in any circumstances. It was not the most beautiful game, but I am proud of our team that we were able to win it.
UMMC Head Coach Miguel Mendez:
- We are very happy about the game. It is not easy to win every game. We won a lot of games and we are very happy for the season. We won European SuperCup, Russian Cup, won the EuroLeague, continue to move in the Russian Championship. Our goal is to win and it is not easy. We had good games, we played beautiful games. Today is the time for not great game. Nevertheless, we won and I am very proud of my players, because they continued to fight. We won today because we fought in every moment. We were playing against a top team with great players. They won a lot of games during last seasons. Their record in the EuroLeague as well as Russian League and Russian Cup games is unbelievable. We have to be really proud about our players that they won tonight. They are very talented. The opponent made 51 points, but showed shooting at only 27 percent. Therefore, I think our defense was great. It is not easy to beat this kind of talented players, players who won a lot of games. So we have to fight together and play like a team in order to win. I am proud today. Like every time this game is the past, it is finished. Now we have to think about the next game. We have to go to Kursk and have to do a very good job to try to win. This is not finish. We are 2:0 we have to win one more game and we have to be prepared for everything.
The Final series of the Russian Championship has passed its equator and the score is – 2:0. The game at DIVS tonight may turn into the last home match for our team. During the match, there was a video in the gym with both the players and the coaches thanking the fans for great support and saying good-bye for everybody until the next season.
The best of three games series moves to Kursk. Game 3 will be played on April 25. In case if it is necessary Game 4 of the Final series will also take place in Kursk. In case of even chances and even score, the big Final Game of the series will be played on April 30 in Ekaterinburg.