Basketball. Cholet stands out against Monaco
There was much anticipation and excitement for the unexpected Betclic Élite clash between Cholet and Monaco this Sunday, January 15. La Meilleraie was filled in just 36 hours, and you could hear it very loudly when Perry Ellis opened the scoring with the first basket at mid-range. That’s how the American infielder fired up the crowd when he served compatriot Justin Patton in the alley-oop (9-7, 4′).
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But “Monaco” is not the leader of the championship for nothing. Although Cholet offered special protection to Monegasque star Mike James, Team Roca found other solutions through Motiejunas (11 points at halftime on 5/5 shooting) or Okobo (18-23, 8′) in penetration. But this CB has resources, we now know, and he was not far behind (24-26, 10′).
The Tillie – Poirier duo shows the way
Laurent Vila’s team had no doubts, especially free-lancer Darel Poirier, who scored three points at the start of the second quarter. In fact, inside Choletais brought all his energy to both sides of the field. He found Kim Tilly on the racket, during a move, the 20-year-old found his feet to record a fantastic dunk (32-28, 12′). The Cholet defense was shaping up, the CB’s famous rotations shined once again. Poirier, the author of the perfect pass, was even applauded after returning to the bench (38-30, 15′).
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The more minutes passed, the more Cholet took over this Monaco team. Dallo Campbell found the long range and created a real first gap (43-32, 17′). Cholet’s top scorers at halftime were…Kim Tilley (9 points) and Darel Poirier (8 points).
Cholet continued the momentum and Dominik Artis, whom we hadn’t seen much of until then, forced Sasa Obradovic to take a timeout (65-50, 25′). Conversely, Monaco only managed to stay out of the water thanks to baskets from none other than Motiejunas. But Cholet made more mistakes, such as this ball lost by Goudou-Sinha, who offered two points on the counterattack (68-61, 28 ‘).
The match ended with high tension
Monaco is a Euroleague team and has seen others. Mike James’ partners were very close and waiting for their moment (72-68, 30′). Curie’s bold strike with the board reassured Cholet’s troops, but things were more complicated. Ouattara tied the two teams (75-75, 33′). And it was Yoan Makoundou, a former member of the house, who allowed his team to come back (75-76, 33′).
In the process, Dallo surrendered to the constant aggressiveness of the Monegasque backs (75-80, 34 ‘). Kim Tillie rekindled it again and this time with three (78-80), then Artis, equalized with one leg (80-80, 35’).
The two teams answered the blow, but Cholet was still there (83-85) thanks to Dallon’s award-winning shot and Patton’s easy basket (85-85, 38′). Ellis put a coin in the three-point machine as Mike James recovered a two-point lead. With one minute remaining, Cholet took the lead by one point (88-87, 39′).
Dallo tackles Mike James… and Artis misses the ball! But in the last possession, Ouattara eliminated Patton and restored the advantage to Monaco with only 4 seconds left in the game (88-89, 39′). Ellis missed one last shot. Cholet bowed.