Review by Christos T. Panagopoulos
The fifth and last day of the Eurobasket’s preliminary round begins on Monday with the following matches:
United Kingdom vs. Ukraine
Germany vs. Israel
Belgium vs. France
Montenegro vs. Serbia
Lithuania vs. Bosnia
Latvia vs. FYROM
Georgia vs. Spain
Croatia vs. Czech R.
Slovenia vs. Poland
Turkey vs. Russia
Italy vs. Sweden
Greece vs. Finland
All results of the 4th day
United Kingdom – Germany 81-74
Great Britain remained in the fight for the ticket to Second Stage of the European Championship. They held off Germany in Ljubljana today to improve at 2-2 record in Group A. Germany suffered the third consecutive loss and slipped at 1-3 record. Andrew Lawrence (185-PG-90, agency: Two Points) posted 22 points to pace the winners. King gave Germany a 17:11 lead midway through the first frame. Schaffartzik drained a three-pointer to make it 23:13 late in the opening quarter. But Daniel Clark capped the period with a treble to narrow the gap. Great Britain tied things up at 29 midway through the second quarter. Andrew Lawrence and Achara put the Brits in front 37:34 late in the half. Achara crowned the second quarter with a three-pointer to make it 42:39 at the interval. The lead changed hands for numerous times throughout the third term. But Great Britain managed to eke out a 59:56 lead at the final break. Andrew Lawrence and Myles Hesson (195-F-90) gave them a 69:61 advantage with just over five minutes to go in regulation. Germany cut the distance to 4 points but Devon Van Oostrum came up with timely five points for Great Britain and made it 78:71 with 51 seconds remaining. Andrew Lawrence then followed with a pair of free throws and Great Britain held on to win the battle. Myles Hesson finished with 21 points and 11 boards, while Daniel Clark added 17 points and 7 boards in the victory. Tibor Pleiss (215-C-89) answered with 20 points and 14 boards for Germany. Robin Benzing chipped in 12 points in the defeat.
Israel – Belgium 87-69
Israel clinched the first win at the European Championship. They prevailed against Belgium to snap three-game losing skid. Afik Nissim (186-PG-81) stepped up with 23 points to pace the winners. Belgium fell at 2-2 record in Group A. Israel overcame a 0-4 start to the game to surge ahead. They unloaded 19 points in the first frame to gain a 4-point lead. Afik Nissim extended the lead to 8 points midway through the second frame. Pnini and Afik Nissim gave Israel a 41:33 halftime advantage. Yotam Halperin (193-SG-84) and Lior Eliyahu made it a double-digit advantage early in the third quarter. Israel dominated on the court boosting the gap at 20-point mark in the third term. They erupted for 32 points in the period to gain a 73:46 lead into the fourth frame. Belgium trimmed the gap in the final stanza but could not avoid the defeat. Yotam Halperin posted 14 points, while Lior Eliyahu added 13 points in the victory. Maxime De Zeeuw (205-PF-87) had 14 points for Belgium. Axel Hervelle chipped in 13 points and grabbed 7 boards for the Lions.
Ukraine – France 71-77
France handed Ukraine their first loss at 2013 EuroBasket. The French side tied both records at 3-1 after a 77:71 win. Ukraine won the first three games and started with the massive 10-2 surge. Boris Diaw (203-PF-82) and Tony Parker (188-PG-82) reduced to 12:10 and then Pietrus made it 16:14 on the board. Tony Parker gave France the first lead early in the second period, while Mishula nailed three for the lead back. Jeter Pooh (180-PG-83, college: Portland) and Natyazhko scored for 26:24 and Lypovyy nailed two three-pointers for 32:28. Ukraine did not allow France to win the half and enjoyed a 36:35 halftime advantage. Boris Diaw tied the game at 39:39 and he nailed three for 44:43 midway through the third period. France managed to post a 16-15 rally in the third quarter and tied the game at 51:51. Pustozvonov and Nando De Colo opened the last period with threes for 54:54. Zaytsev scored three for 57:54 and Boris Diaw reduced to 57:56. Heurtel gave France 58:57, while Tony Parker increased the lead to 3. Korniyenko and Tony Parker exchanged the baskets at 62:59 and Tony Parker scored another seven points for 67:59. Ajinca increased to 70:59 and Zabirchenko reduced to 72:63. Jeter Pooh and Mishula cut it to 75:68, while Tony Parker closed the game at 76:68. Mishula nailed another three for 76:71, while Pietrus scored the last point in the game. Tony Parker was unstoppable with 28 points and Boris Diaw notched 15. Gelabale posted 10, whilst Batum had 8. Jeter Pooh answered with 20 points for Ukraine, whilst Mishula, Lypovyy and Gladyr poured in 9 each.
Bosnia – FYROM 62-54
Bosnia and Herzegovina jumped at 2-2 record in Group B following a tough victory over FYROM. Mirza Teletovic (206-F-85, agency: Beo Basket) nailed 22 points and grabbed 7 boards for the winners. FYROM fell at 1-3 record in the ladder. FYROM opened the game with seven straight points. But Bosnia and Herzegovina answered with 10 points in a row to surge ahead. The lead changed hands for several times before Gordic gave Bosnia a 16:15 lead after ten minutes. The teams stayed neck and neck throughout the second term. Mirza Teletovic capped the first half with two free throws to give Bosnia a narrow 29:28 halftime lead. Pero Pero Antic helped FYROM to a 42:37 lead midway through the third term. They arrived at the final intermission up by four points 45:41. Nihad Djedovic (198-F-90, agency: Beo Basket) kept Bosnia and Herzegovina within striking distance from FYROM in the first part of the fourth frame. Elmedin Kikanovic and Nihad Djedovic helped Bosnia and Herzegovina to a 55:52 lead with under four minutes remaining. Mirza Teletovic followed with a three-pointer to make it 58:52 for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Elmedin Kikanovic added two free throws to extend the lead to 8 points. FYROM managed just two points in the reminder of the contest as Bosnia and Herzegovina eked out a crucial victory. Nihad Djedovic posted 20 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists for the winners. Bo McCalebb (178-PG-85, college: New Orleans) answered with 19 points for FYROM. Pero Antic added 17 points and 7 rebounds in the defeat.
Lithuania – Montenegro 77-70 OT
Lithuania secured the third consecutive victory at the 2013 EuroBasket. They overcame Montenegro in overtime thriller to improve at 3-1 record in Group B. Montenegro slipped at 1-3. Ksistof Lavrinovic (210-C-79) posted 24 points to lead the winners. Lithuania opened the game with six straight points. They maintained the lead throughout the bigger part of the first frame. But Montenegro capped the period with 7:2 run to level things up at 19. Sehovic and Sekulic put Montenegro in front 23:19 early in the second term. The lead changed hands for several times throughout the second quarter. Tyrese Rice (185-PG-87, agency: Priority Sports, college: Boston Coll.) capped the half with a jumper to give the Balkan team a 34:32 lead. Jonas Valanciunas (211-C-92) and Linas Kleiza quickly gave Lithuania lead in the third term. The teams exchanged baskets before Mantas Kalnietis and Lavrinovic made it 51:47 for the Baltic team at the end of the third term. Mantas Kalnietis and Lavrinovic stretched the gap at 8-point mark early in the fourth quarter 57:49. However Sehovic and Sekulic answered with four quick points to keep Montenegro in the game. Bojan Dubljevic and Nemanja Bjelica (209-F/C-88, agency: Interperformances) put the Balkan team within one 56:57 with just over four minutes remaining. Sehovic tied things up at 58 with under two minutes remaining. Ksistof Lavrinovic sank two free throws but Bojan Dubljevic followed an offensive rebounds with a layup to even things up at 60. Ksistof Lavrinovic converted a three-point play to put Lithuania in front but Tyrese Rice drained a three-pointer to force overtime. Mantas Kalnietis, Seibutis and Jonas Valanciunas secured a 72:68 lead for Lithuania in the extra period. Tyrese Rice narrowed the gap but Darjus Lavrinovic drilled a trey and then Jonas Valanciunas added two free throws to seal the win for the Baltic team. Jonas Valanciunas provided 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Mantas Kalnietis and Linas Kleiza added 10 points each for Lithuania. Tyrese Rice answered with 19 points for Montenegro. Bojan Dubljevic had 14 points in the loss.
Serbia – Latvia 80-71
Nenad Krstic (212-C-83) leads Serbia past Latvia in Day 5 of the 2013 EuroBasket. He nailed 25 points as his team won 80:71. Serbia improved to 3-1 record, while Latvia dropped at 2-2 record. Serbia started strong and won the first period 28:15. Latvia however replied with a 13-10 rally as the score showed 38:28 on the board. Nenad Krstic increased to 44:30 early in the third period, while Kristaps Janicenoks (196-F-83) cut it to 46:40. He nailed three for 50:46 and Meiers reduced to 55:53. Serbia however managed to push the tempo at the end of the game and sealed the victory. Nedovic and Markovic closed the game for a 9-point win. Rasko Katic (208-C-80, agency: Beo Basket) and Nemanja Bjelica poured in 11 points each, while Nedovic, Bogdanovic and Markovic scored 9 each. Kristaps Janicenoks finished the night with 18 points and Dairis Bertans (192-SG-89) notched 14. Blums chipped in 12, whilst Meiers had 10.
Slovenia – Croatia 74-76 OT
Croatia handed Slovenia the first defeat at the 2013 EuroBasket. Bojan Bogdanovic (203-SG-89, agency: XL Basketball Agency) nailed 24 points and added 7 rebounds to lead Croatia to a key win in Group C. They joined Slovenia and Spain on top of the ladder. Slovenia led throughout the opening quarter. They recorded an 18:12 lead but Croatia were able to narrow it to three points 17:20. Domen Lorbek and Nachbar gave Slovenia a 28:19 advantage early in the second term. But Croatia gradually evened the contest. Bojan Bogdanovic tied things up at 33 late in the first half. Zoran Dragic and Slokar gave the hosts a 41:35 after twenty minutes of action. The gap grew at 13-point mark early in the third term as Slovenia stayed in charge. But Croatia capped the period on a 10:0 run to narrow the gap at 2 points 55:57. Ante Tomic (217-C-87, agency: XL Basketball Agency) and Bojan Bogdanovic put Croatia in front 61:60 midway through the fourth frame. Muric and Bojan Bogdanovic exchanged three-pointers and then Muric followed with a dunk to give the home side a 65:64 lead. However Ante Tomic sank one free throw and sent the game into overtime. Rudez and Bojan Bogdanovic opened the extra period with three-pointers to make it 71:66. Rudez later added another one to keep Croatia in front 76:71. Goran Dragic (190-PG-86) cut the deficit. Ante Tomic both of his free throw attempts to give a chance for Slovenia. Domen Lorbek hit the first free throw and missed the second one on purpose but Zoran Dragic could not convert after winning an offensive rebound. Ante Tomic finished with 11 points and 15 boards for Croatia. Roko-Leni Ukic added 10 points for the winners. Slovenia answered with 23 points from Goran Dragic. Domen Lorbek chipped in 16 points in the loss.
Czech Republic – Georgia 95-79
Czech Republic rout Georgia in Celje at the 2013 EuroBasket. They needed a 95:79 win for 2-2 record. Georgia meanwhile fell at 1-3 record in Group C. Czech Republic started the game with a 26-15 lead and never looked behind. Jan Vesely (211-F-90) scored for 39:20, while Jelinek made 45:22 advantage for his team. Georgia managed to reduce the gap a bit before the halftime as Georgi Tsintsadze (192-PG-86) closed the half at 54:35. Manuchar Markoishvili (196-SF-86) cut it to 15 midway through the third period, but Georgia could not catch up with the opponents. Czech Republic posted a 21-19 rally in the third period and did not mind a 20-25 run in the last stanza. Jan Vesely erupted with 27 points and Tomas Satoransky (201-PG-91) followed him with 20. Jelinek notched 11, whilst Pumprla had 10. Georgi Tsintsadze and Manuchar Markoishvili netted 20 points in defeat, whilst Shermadini had 18. Sanikidze poured in 10 points for Georgian team.
Poland – Spain 53-89
Spain roll over Poland in Day 5 of the 2013 EuroBasket. They grabbed an 89:53 win for 3-1 record in Group C. Poland meanwhile lost the fourth consecutive game and dropped at 0-4 record. Spain erupted with a 25-5 surge in the first period and never looked behind. They added massive 24-8 burst in the second period and enjoyed a 76:30 lead when Ricky Rubio (192-G-90) sent the teams to the lockers. Poland managed to win the start of the third period 7-2 as Maciej Lampe (211-F/C-85) reduced to 78:37. Spain however posted a 27-17 rally in the third quarter and had 89:53 lead at the end of 30 minutes. Poland replied with a 23-13 final push to reduce to final 890:53 result. Marc Gasol (216-C-85, agency: Interperformances) and Ricky Rubio top-scored for the winners with 15 points each, while Rudy Fernandez (198-SF-85) brought 13. Rey delivered 12 and Sergio Rodriguez had 11. Przemyslaw Zamojski (193-G/F-86, agency: Alti Sport, college: Independence CC) produced 11 points in a loss, whilst Maciej Lampe had 10. Ponitka and Kelati ended up with 7 points each in defeat.
Sweden – Turkey 74-87
Turkey celebrated the first win at the 2013 EuroBasket. They overcame Sweden to snap three-game losing skid in Koper. Both teams are now tied at 1-3 record in Group D. Ender Arslan (190-PG-83) posted 22 points to lead the winners. Sweden got to a 9:3 start to the game. But Turkey quickly denied the deficit. The teams ended the first term tied at 17. The lead changed hands for several times before Turkey went on an 8:0 run and gained a 37:30 lead. They arrived at halftime up by 5 points 40:35. Turkey tipped off the second half on a 15:3 run to ensure a 55:38 lead. They secured a 67:58 lead heading into the fourth period. Ender Arslan and Erden made it 74:60 for Turkey early in the final stanza. Sweden could not get within single digits throughout the reminder of the contest as Turkey cruised to the victory. Ersan Ilyasova (207-F-87) finished with 21 points for the winners. Kerem Gonlum added 19 points for Turkey. Jeffery Taylor (200-F-89, college: Vanderbilt) responded with 18 points for Sweden. Jonas Jerebko had 17 points in the loss.
Greece – Italy 72-81
Italy clinched the fourth straight win at the 2013 EuroBasket. They edged Greece 81:72 and took 4-0 record on top of Group D. Marco Belinelli (196-G-86) and Kaimakoglou scored the first points for their teams and then Cinciarini tied it all at 7:7. Luigi Datome (203-F-87) and Cinciarini gave Italy a 14:11 lead, while Stratos Perperoglou (203-F-84) tied it all at 16:16 at the end of the first period. Printezis made two free throws for 21:20 and then Bourousis gave Greece 27:25 advantage. The latter made two free throws for 33:27 and Sloukas increased to 35:29. Papanikolaou nailed another three-pointer for 38:33, while Marco Belinelli closed the half from the long range for 38:36. Gentile gave Italy 46:45 lead and Luigi Datome nailed three for 4-point advantage. Luigi Datome posted another from the long range for 57:50. Gentile and Marco Belinelli scored for 60:51 and Marco Belinelli brought 61:51. Fotsis however closed the third period at 63:56 as Italy won the frame 27-18. Nikolaos Zisis (197-G-83) nailed three to tie the game at 70:70, while Marco Belinelli scored four for 74:70. Gentile scored the last three points for the winners to remain undefeated with Italians. Marco Belinelli stepped up with 23 points for the winners and Luigi Datome netted 19. Gentile shot 16, whilst Cinciarini had 9. Nikolaos Zisis replied with 16 points in defeat and Stratos Perperoglou brought 12. Papanikolaou and Bourousis delivered 11 points each in defeat.
Finland – Russia 86-83 2OT
Finland sent Russia packing and remained them winless at 2013 EuroBasket. The Finnish side needed two overtimes to seal an 86:83 win. Russia scored the first 4 points in the game and Voronov later brought 8:2 lead. Sokolov made two free throws for 15:8, while Antonov nailed three for 18:11. Finland however replied with a 10-0 run and took 21:18 early in the second period. Shawn Huff (198-SF-84, college: Valparaiso) made three free throws for 26:22, while Sasu Salin (192-G-91) posted a three for 29:26. Fridzon closed the half at 31:30 as Finland won the quarter 15-12. Russia dominated the third period and managed to win the frame 16-10. They kept Finland scoreless in more than 5 minutes at the end of the period, while Shawn Huff broke the silence for 46:41 and closed the period. Shawn Huff continued their great performance in the fourth period and nailed two three pointers and a lay-up for 57:57. Ponkrashov and Antonov scored for 62:57 with 30 seconds to go in the fourth quarter, but Russia failed to win. Koponen and Hanno Mottola (209-PF-76, college: Utah) were perfect from the free throw line for 67:67 at the end of the regulation. Alexey Shved (198-G-88, agency: Alti Sport) and Savrasenko gave Russia 71:67 and then again Savrasenko and Alexey Shved posted two each for 75:71. Hanno Mottola and Lee meanwhile tied the game at 75:75 at the end of the first overtime. Lee and Sasu Salin ensured the victory in second overtime for a total 86:83 win. Shawn Huff top-scored for the winners with 20 points, while Sasu Salin, Tuukka Kotti (205-PF-81, college: Providence) and Hanno Mottola netted 12 each. Koponen followed them with 11 points in a win. Alexey Shved answered with 25 points in a loss, whilst Fridzon collected 16 points and 10 rebounds. Antonov notched 10 and Monya brought 9.