Khimki Moscow Region held on for a tough 78-82 road win at PAOK Thessaloniki on Tuesday to take over second place in Group J. Both teams came into the game tied 1-1, but after many ties and lead changes, the visitors pulled away in the final quarter and held off a late PAOK charge to win. Tyler Honeycutt led the winners with 14 points and had company in double figures. Petteri Koponen and Ruslan Pateev added 13 pints each, Tyrese Rice 11 and Marko Popovic 10. Khimki needed all their veteran leaders to withstand PAOK, which got 17 points from Marc Carter, 14 from Keith Langford and 10 from Julian Vaughn.
Vaughn's 5 points right after tipoff shot PAOK in front 7-4 before the lead changed hands on a dunk by Egor Vyaltsev and free throws by Evangelos Margaritis. Then 5 points in a row by both Pateev and Honeycutt filled most of a 0-12 run that put Khimki in control at 9-20. PAOK battled back with the next 7 points, pulling withing 16-20 ona basket by Apollon Tsochlas, but free throws by Popovic and Rice kept Khimki out front by 16-24 after 10 minutes. Tsochlas and Carter struck from downtown to resume PAOK's charge to get within 24-26 early in the second quarter. The comeback was complete with another triple, by Jake Odum, and free throws by Langford to make it 29-28. Ties and lead changes dominated after that as a triple by Sergey Monya for Khimki was met by one for Langford. Both teams shot impressively from the free throw line — PAOK 14 for 15 and Khimki 7 for 7 — and pulled into the break all even at 40-40.
Neither team could lock down a lead after halftime, either, as Kostas Kakaroudis joined PAOK's scoring, which was just enough to keep up with Rice and Koponen, whose free throw tied it up 50-50. Back and forth they went through a total of five ties and four lead changes in the quarter until Vyaltsev's free throws put Khimki in front and Popovic added a jumper for a 54-57 lead for the visitors after 30 minutes. Khimki seemingly broke the game open to start the final quarter as Popovic's three-pointer and Honeycutt's dunk and triple filled a 0-10 blast that put the guests suddenly up by 54-67. Carter reeled back the difference to single digits with 9 points in the next few minutes, then Odum's three-point play suddenly made it 70-75 with 2 minutes left. Pateev came up big with a dunk then, but PAOK kept chipping away until Georgios Dedas hit a three-pointer with 9 seconds left to make it 76-79. It went down to the free throw line, where Rice and Kopenen combined on 3 of 4 tries to take a narrow victory and control of second place back to Moscow.