2014/15 LKL Season in Review: ROlander, TOlander and Oriakhi

The 2014/15 LKL season has come to a close for the Twin Towers of Olander and former UConn National Champion Alex Oriakhi. Here is a look back on the season in review including final statistics, best performance, and top play for each player:

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

Ryan Olander and BC Siauliai entered the LKL playoffs with the #7 seed, in a best-of-five matchup with #2 Lietuvos Rytas. The Lithuanian powerhouse proved too strong for Siauliai, knocking them out of the playoffs with three straight victories behind the play of Americans Billy Baron (UVA/URI), Mike Moser (UCLA/Oregon) and Travis Leslie (Georgia/LA Clippers).

Though a strong season overall, which included a Baltic Basketball League Championship, Olander put forth his strongest numbers when it mattered most- during EuroChallenge play. The EuroChallenge is the third-tier professional league in Europe and Olander ranked in the top three converting on 73% of his field goal attempts- drawing interest from competitors in the process.

BC Siauliai Final Record: 18-22

R. Olander G MIN FG% FT% RPG PPG RANK
Siauliai 41 17.4 54% 62% 4.0 7.6 7.7
Euro-Chal. 6 21 73% 55% 3.7 11 9.8

Best Game: November 12th, 2014: Siauliai 94 – Tsmoki-Minsk (Belarus) 91. Olander had 23 points on 11-14 shooting to go along with 4 rebounds and 1 assist in a road win over Tsmoki-Minsk.

Top Play: The chuckle from the announcer is by far the best part.


Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

Tyler Olander played the first half of the season with BC Siauliai before he was loaned to Mazeikiai for the remainder of the year for more playing time. Since joining the 1-24 Mazeikiai in February, Olander led the club to a 5-8 record in his 13 games averaging 7 points and nearly 5 rebounds in the process.

Mazeikiai Final Record: 6-32

T. Olander G MIN FG% FT% RPG PPG RANK
Siauliai 23 11.7 55% 84% 3.0 5.0 5.5
Mazeikiai 13 17.2 44% 73% 4.8 7.2 7.7

Best Game: February 28th, 2015: Lietuvos Rytas 76 – Mazeikiai 70. Tyler exploded for 14 points and 9 rebounds in just 20 minutes of action in a near upset of #2 Lietuvos Rytas.

Top Play: Olander appeared at #2 in the BEKO LKL Top Ten plays for Round 22 with this mid-air adjustment.


eurobasket.com

eurobasket.com

Alex Oriakhi led the Pieno Zvaigzdes “Milk Stars” to the #4 seed in the LKL playoffs, straight into a matchup with #3 Juventus. After splitting the first four games of the series, the Milk Stars fell short in Game 5 by a 69-61 margin, ending their season. Although it was a tough end to the year, Oriakhi put together a strong year numbers-wise and was elected a starter in the LKL All-Star game. With his rights still owned by the Sacramento Kings of the NBA, Oriakhi has returned stateside to compete with the Kings summer league team.

P. Zvaigzdes Final Record: 24-16

2014/15 G MIN FG% FT% RPG PPG RANK
A. Oriakhi 41 18 55% 61% 6.8 8.8 10.6

Best Game: January 31st, 2015: P. Zvaigzdes 99 – Siauliai 97. In an impressive month of January where he was named Player of the Month, Oriakhi led the Milk Stars over the Twin Towers with 17 points and 14 rebounds (8 offensive) in 20 minutes.

Top Play: Oriakhi extends for the dramatic finish off an oop from teammate Michael Dixon for #2 on the BEKO LKL Top Ten regular season plays.


Stay tuned for season reviews for all of UConn Country in Europe!

Ryan Olander posterizes Lithuanian center (video)

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

A species comprising less than 1% of the world’s population, seven footers or “footers” are a rare breed. Whether intentional or not, life at such a high altitude leaves them especially susceptible to be victimized by posterizations, leading to hanging heads and slumped shoulders- currently the largest known threat to the species. The most recent victim, 7’0 Kymantas Simonas of Tonybet, was reduced to extinction after this shame-inflicting dunk from Siauliai’s Ryan Olander, seen below at #5 in this week’s BEKO LKL’s Top Ten plays.

Since winning the Baltic Basketball League Championship earlier this month, Siauliai has gone 2-2 in their return to LKL play. With only 4 league games remaining, Siauliai is essentially locked at the #7 seed and is slated to play #2 Zalgiris when first round play begins in May. This year’s LKL playoffs will follow a best of 5 format for all three rounds of action.

More to come when official seeding is released…

Alex Oriakhi named All-Star starter in Lithuania

Alex Oriakhi All Star

This Milk Star is officially an All-Star. A big congratulations to former UConn forward Alex Oriakhi who was named an All-Star starter in the 2015 BEKO-LKL All-Star game. Oriakhi, averaging 10 points/7 rebounds for #4 Pieno Zvaigzdes (Milk Stars), was recently named BEKO-LKL player of the month for January. If you missed it, here is a feature video done on his accomplishment.

Before participating in the festivities, Oriakhi will face off with former UConn teammate Tyler Olander this Saturday. Recap to follow…

Twin Towers continue to win in Lithuania

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

The Baltic Region was ripe with victory last week as both Olanders picked up big wins for their respective clubs. Ryan Olander dropped 13 points/4 rebounds in a win for #7 Siauliai over #8 Lietkabelis while Tyler Olander just missed a double-double contributing 9 points/9 rebounds for #11 Mazeikiai in their upset of #9 Tonybet.

If you missed my previous post, Tyler Olander has been loaned from Siauliai to Mazeikiai, where he will finish the season. Catch up here.

Siauliai – Lietkabelis

Highlights:

Full Game:

Mazeikiai – Tonybet

Highlights:

Full Game:

Ryan and Siauliai return to action tomorrow with a Lithuanian Cup bronze medal rematch against #5 Juventus. Meanwhile, Tyler and Mazeikiai battle Alex Oriakhi and #4 Zvaigzdes in a primetime matchup on Saturday.

Tyler Olander dunks his way into BEKO-LKL Top 10 Plays (video)

bcsiauliai.lt

bcsiauliai.lt

It has definitely been an adjustment year for Tyler Olander, transitioning from a senior season which saw him struggle to find minutes to a professional league competing against seasoned veterans. Last month, Olander was loaned from Siauliai to fellow league member Mazeikiai in order to get the young lefty more playing time. Loans are common in European basketball, especially in situations where a player is signed to a long term deal- as Olander is. Olander will finish up the season with Mazeikiai but his rights remain with Siauliai and he will return to the club next season.

In his first three games with Mazeikiai, Olander has averaged 7 points and 5 rebounds in 14 minutes. His last game against #3 Lietuvos Rytas was by far his best, dropping 14 points to go along with 9 rebounds.

Speaking of adjustments, check out this mid-air adjustment by Olander in this week’s BEKO-LKL Top Ten plays.

Vote Ryan Olander to LKL All Star Team

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

2015 BEKO-LKL voting is now underway until March 8th. Help Siauliai Center Ryan Olander return to Vilnius by following these voting instructions below. You may also win a trip for two to Turkey in the process…

Note: DO NOT translate the page to English, for whatever reason I could not submit my vote. The pictures below should serve as a sufficient guide.

  1. Navigate to the following link: http://zvaigzdziudiena.lt/
  2. Highlight the RED team on the right side of the page by clicking the RED banner. 
  3. Select the “Center” position, designated by the black arrow:

4. Scroll through the players below to find Olander at the bottom of the page:

Step 25. Olander should appear in the position previously filled by the black arrow. I’m not sure if you need to select an entire team, but I did so just to be safe. 

Step 36. Scroll down and hit the GREEN VOTE button:

Vote7. Fill out the information page accordingly:

Vote Info Page

8. Continue to monitor your email as you may have just won a trip to Turkey.

 

Olander and Siauliai upset their way to Bronze in the Lithuanian Cup

Siauliai 2.0

Gintaras Siuparys

The LKF Cup is an annual professional basketball competition held among the top 8 teams in the Lithuanian National League (LKL). At #7, Siauliai barely qualified for the tournament. They did however create the most buzz, knocking off heavily favored #2 Neptunas of the Euroleague in the quarterfinals, a club who had only lost three games all season and features former OKC Thunder guard Mustafa Shakur. Next, Siauliai took Lithuanian power Lietuvos Rytas down to the wire in the semifinals before eventually knocking off #4 Juventus -behind 9 points/8 rebounds from Ryan Olander- to take home the bronze. Olander averaged 7 points and 6 rebounds over the course of the three day tournament. Here are game highlights below:

LKF Quarterfinal: #7 Siauliai vs #2 Neptunas

LKF Semifinal: #7 Siauliai vs #3 Lietuvos Rytas

LKF Consolation: #7 Siauliai vs #4 Juventus

Siauliai returns to LKL action March 2nd against #10 Nevezis. Hopefully they can ride this momentum into the LKL Tournament, which begins in May.

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

Air Olander strikes again…

bcsiauliai.lt

bcsiauliai.lt

Tyler Olander had 13 points and a team leading 6 rebounds as #7 Siauliai rolled over #11 Mazeikiai, 86-61. Ryan Olander finished with just 4 points but once again provided the play of the game, on this lob the announcer clearly did not expect him to finish:

Air Olander makes an additional appearance, in this week’s LKL Top 10 plays (#7).

Siauliai returns to action January 31st, against Alex Oriakhi and #6 Zvaigzdes. Oriakhi is averaging 10 points/7 rebounds on the year but his club has fallen to Siauliai in both meetings this season.

 

Siauliai loses to Rytas; adds American Jeff Allen (VT)

Gintaras Siuparys

Gintaras Siuparys

#7 Siauliai hung tough for the duration of the game but took home the loss yesterday against #4 Lietuvos Rytas, 88-72. Down 46-32 at half, the club rallied during a 28 point third quarter to within two, but ultimately could not overcome Rytas’ hot shooting (42% from three). Ryan Olander had 2 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists in the loss.

Highlights:

Full Game:

In other news, Siauliai has added former Virginia Tech forward Jeff Allen. Allen finished fourth place all-time at Virginia Tech with 1,111 career rebounds and also became the first player in ACC (not to be confused with AAC of course-big difference) history with 1,500 career points, 1,000 rebounds, 200 steals and 150 blocked shots. Allen comes to Lithuania from Maccabi Haifa of the Israeli Premier League -the top national league in Israel- where he was averaging 11 points/4 rebounds.

Here are some highlights from Allen’s VT days: