Monday, March 16, 2009
Okay. I was wrong about who Maccabi Ramat Hen's opponent, but it's pretty hard to figure out the post-season in Israel. I still believe that the top six teams are playing some sort of post-season round robin to determine who goes to the semi-finals. According to the writeup at safsal.co.il, Ramat Hen's 72-70 win over Raanana Hertzeliya virtually assures that Ivory Latta's Maccabi Ramat Hen team will clinch second place.
The box score here.
According to the quarter-by-quarter score, it was a very close game. Ramat Hen took a 19-16 lead at the end of the first quarter, and managed to hold that three point lead at halftime, 33-30. However, in the third quarter Raanana Hertzeliya closed the gap and the score was tied 48-48 going into the final quarter.
It is implied at the safsal web site that Noa Ganor sank two free throws in the fourth to put Ramat Hen up 72-70. LaToya Pringle must have blocked the final shot taken by Raanana Hertzeliya to win the game.
Raanana Hertzeliya hit 44 percent of their field goal attempts compared to 41 percent from Ramat Hen. Neither team rebounded particularly well, but Ramat Hen had more offensive rebounds, by a factor of 12 to 7. Raanana Hertzeliya had slightly more turnovers. I suspect that the fourth of Dean Oliver's keys to the game was paramount - Ramat Hen visited the free throw line 24 times to just 9 for Raanana Hertzeliya, and we know Noa Ganor's free throws were particularly important.
Another odd fact: 66 of Ramat Hen's 69 total points were scored by the five original starters.
Maccabi Ramat Hen
Ivory Latta: 20 points on 7-for-18 shooting.
Ayana Walker: 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Shay Doron: 11 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists.
Michal Epstein: 15 points, 6 rebounds.
LaToya Pringle: 4 points, 8 rebounds.
Temeka Johnson: 24 points, 4 rebounds, 6 turnovers from the Los Angeles Sparks guard.
Kelly Schumacher: 16 points, 8 rebounds for the backup Detroit Shock center.
Charde Houston: 4 points in 24 minutes played for the Minnesota Lynx forward.
Unable to find any pictures. You can find video here, but guess what? You can only view it if you live in Israel!