In the first round of ABA League, Red Star, as a host, defeated BC Mornar (from Bar) with a score of 88 – 77 in Pionir, in Belgrade. It was 47 – 30 after first half.
Red Star started a new season with a new young coach Dušan Alimpijević and a new team that in the first quarter of the game showed who will be the winner. Newcomers, Frenchman Mathias Lessort, who came from Nanterre, finished the game with 22 points and Taylor Rochestie, who had 17 points, 4 rebounds, 7 assists and one steal were the players of the game.
Guests from Bar were taking the lead at the beginning of the game, but excellent Mathias Lessort scored five points in a raw and helped his team to take a lead, which was plus 7 (19 – 12) after first period.
In the second quarter, Red Star scored 8 points while Mornar didn’t score anything and gain confidence. They scored 5 out of 8 for three point shots, so they started to braking their opponent and continued that job in the third quarter, after the break. In one point, Dušan Alimpijević’s team had an advantage of 21 points and after thirty minutes red and whites were leading by 20 (70 – 50).
In the third quarter there were lots of faults that were unnecessary and because of the breaks it lasted long and it wasn’t quite interesting for fans to watch, but Red Star didn’t allow its opponent to get closer and allowed itself to calmly finish the match.
In the last period, Red Star players were easily defending their lead but Montenegrin club Mornar was able to reduce the lead to 10 points. The game was ended by 11 points lead for the host and the only team from ABA League that will play in EuroLeague this season.
The top scorers in Red Star (Lessort and Rochestie) had help from Milko Bjelica who finished the game with 15 points while for Mornar, Brandis Raley-Ross scored 21. But neither him nor Derek Ryan Needham, who finished the match with 17 points, were able to help their team to get the victory against powerful team from Belgrade.
In the second round of ABA League Red Star will host another team from Serbia Meag Bemax, who also win in the first round. They defeated their opponent BC Cibona from Zagreb in Croatia with a final score of 95 – 88.
At the other hand, Mornar from Bar will host Partizan NIS from Belgrade, and that will be chance for both team to score first victory in ABA League season 2017.2018 because black and whites were defeated by BC MZT Aerodrom in Skopje with a score of 92 – 89.