The Liepāja Olympic Centre was the scene of the first day’s action in the Baltic Cup 2016, with the 3 person officiating keeping things honest out on the court. Each of the competing countries, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia already had wins on the board in the action on the opening day.
In the first game of the tournament in the M65 age category, Vilniaus Statybos Senjorai were too good for Tukums, taking out the game 51:39. Rimvydas Aukstuolis top scored for the Lithuanians with 11 points while Algirdas Dambrauskas with 10 points dominated on the boards with 10 rebounds, 7 of them offensive. Arvids Drikis finished the game with 10 points for the Latvians.
In the Lithuanian derby in the M60 age category, Zalgiris-KTU took out the game against Ranga from Klaipeda 55:43, with Vitoldas Masalskis popping in 20 and Voldemaras Tatarunas 12 points for the winners while Audrius Jankauskas swept 12 boards. Arunas Baltinas finished with 10 points for the losers.
TOP Trust from Tallinn was too strong for the taller Salilita from Vilnius to take out the match 49:38 in the M55 age group. Andrus Toom and Jaak Lill put in 13 points and 11 respectively to seal the victory. Arunas Sarka and Alvidas Rakauskas had 13 and 12 points each while Steponas Jokubauskas had 13 rebounds for the Lithuanians.
Tukums coach Uldis Feldmanis almost snatched victory from Arsenal-Tula in a late comeback using a full court press in the M50 age category in what was the day’s best game. A last moment 3 was unsuccessful giving the Russians the win, 53:51 on the bell. Valerii Karpushin was unstoppable with 32 points and 11 rebounds. Andris Liepins 37 points came with 11 personal turnovers for the Latvians. Tukums had 10 more rebounds than the Russians but no victory this time.
In the M50 age category Patvanka from Kaunas was too strong for Wombat from Tallinn 71:60 with Mindaugas Lukosius scoring 29 points for the winners. Arvydas Venclovas and Ramunas Juska added 14 and 13 points respectively. Ott Poldsaar managed 19 points for the Estonians.
In the M40 age group, Alkajas-Dastra had Ventspils’ measure 71:63, with four players scoring over 10 points and Virginijus Sirvydis leading the way with 20 points for the Lithuanians. Ugis Lasmanis with 21 points and 9 rebounds was strong in the centre with Raimonds Zajacs adding 20 for the Latvians, but Gundars Berzins’ 12 rebounds were not enough to get the Latvians through.
In the M45 group Jurmala/Lapmezciems took the game 50:40 from Project 44 with an outstanding game from Lauris Jakobsons who added 15 points to his 13 rebounds for the Latvians. Ten points each from Alexander Ustinov and Georgy Martyshkin were not enough to save the day for the Russian team.
Simuna IVAX was too strong for Ķekava in a fairly physical encounter in the M60 age group, winning 40:34. Igor Orlov’s 16 points and 9 rebounds were the key for the Estonians. Dmitrijs Pagens’ 10 points, 9 rebounds and Gunars Lazda’s 10 points were insufficient to turn the game the Latvians’ way.
In the M40 category, KK Ribi won the closest game so far in the men’s tournament, 50:49 against Ventspils. Priit Lokushievski scored 16 for the Estonians, supported by Toomas Liivak with 10 points. Raoul Suurorg picked up 9 defensive rebounds for the winners. Ugis Lasmanis had another good game with 19 points and 9 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough to get the Latvians over the line.