Tiffany Hayes played well from start to finish and scored a game-high 21 points for Perfumerias Avenida in its 70-42 victory over Nadezhda on Wednesday at Caferaga Sport Saloon in Istanbul, Turkey. She was an efficient 9-of-13 from the field and 2-of-3 from beyond the arc.
Hayes returns to the court after opting out of the 2020 WNBA season, at the time saying: “I believe there are much more important things (than basketball) to be thinking about in this moment.”
In addition to her offensive contributions on Wednesday, the longtime Atlanta Dream star also nabbed a team-high three steals to aid the phenomenal defensive effort.
Avenida (1-0) built its lead gradually throughout the game until it reached a 30-point margin with 1:24 remaining in the fourth. Six of Hayes’ made field goals and her lone free throw combined to give the team its biggest lead.
She scored the first four points of the contest and went on to hit shots that gave Avenida its first leads of eight points, and then subsequent double-digit leads of 17, 19, 20 and 24 points, respectively.
⭐ @tiphayes3 comes up big in @CBAvenida opening night win!— EuroLeague Women (@EuroLeagueWomen) December 2, 2020
21 PTS | 9-13 FG | 5 REB | 24 EFF pic.twitter.com/x4pKA00r5M
As a team, Avenida led by 10 points after the first quarter, 19 points after the second and 21 after the third.
Emese Hof had the game’s only double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds. She scored eight of her points and grabbed 10 of her rebounds in the first half. Karlie Samuelson and Silvia Dominguez each scored 11 points for the winners. Katie Lou Samuelson of the Dallas Wings notched eight points and six boards. Maite Cazorla, who played for the Dream in 2019, led Avenida with five assists.
Monique Billings, who has played three seasons with Atlanta, had 11 points and was the only Nadezhda player in double figures. She also led her team with eight rebounds.
Nadezhda (1-1) struggled from the field all game long, making just six shots on 24 attempts in the first half and going 7-of-26 in the second for an overall percentage of 26. Avenida shot 41.9 percent from the field and didn't need to get to the line very much to win. It made 2-of-4 free throws, while Nadezhda went 14-of-17. Avenida’s dominance when it came to two-pointers was all that mattered — it outscored Nadezhda 42-14 in the paint.
There will be five EuroLeague Women games on Thursday:
9 a.m. ET | Arka Gdynia vs. Fenerbahçe
11 a.m. ET | Famila Schio vs. TTT Riga
12 p.m. ET | ZVVZ USK Praha vs. LDLC Feminin
12 p.m. ET | Basket Landes vs. Bourges Basket
2 p.m. ET | Spar Girona vs. UMMC Ekaterinburg
Stay tuned for previews and details on featured WNBA stars!