Day 9 (Quarter-Finals)
Serbia vs Spain
Slovenia vs France
Croatia vs Ukraine
Lithuania vs Italy
All of these will be on NBA TV
Latvia - Belgium 56-60
Belgium shocked Latvian basketball nation today. The Lions shocked Latvia in Group E action to deny a quarterfinal appearance for the Baltic team. Sacha Massot (205-F/C-83, agency: LBM Management) posted 14 points to lead Belgium to the first win at the Second Stage of the tournament. Belgium surprised Latvia with a confident start. They grabbed a 9:2 lead early in the encounter. Latvia tied things up at 9 after few minutes. Skele capped the first period with a layup to give Latvia a 15:14 lead. Mejeris gave Latvia an 18:14 lead early in the second term. But Belgium responded with a 10:0 run to gain a 24:18 lead. Belgium maintained the lead throughout the bigger part of the second term. But Strelnieks and Janicenoks capped the first half with five straight points to level things up at 32. Rolands Freimanis (210-PF-88) put Latvia ahead early in the third term but once again Belgium quickly struck back and pulled ahead. Wen Boss Mukubu (198-F-83, agency: SportsTalent, college: UAB) gave them a 41:36 lead midway through the period. Belgium arrived at the final intermission up by four points 46:42. Bertans tied things up at 46 early in the final term however Belgium responded with a 9:0 run to spur ahead. Fremainis and Rihards Kuksiks put Latvia within one at 56:57 with 84 seconds remaining in regulation. But Sacha Massot dunked for a 59:56 Belgian lead. Bertans missed a three-pointer and Wen Boss Mukubu punished Latvia on the other end with a free throw that put Belgium out of reach. Wen Boss Mukubu provided 13 points, while Axel Hervelle added 10 points and 7 rebounds in the victory. Rolands Freimanis answered with 10 points for Latvia. Rihards Kuksiks had 9 points in the loss.
Ukraine - Lithuania 63-70
Lithuania finished their EuroBasket Second Stage campaign on a winning note. They knocked down Ukraine to improve at 4-1 record in Group E. Linas Kleiza (203-SF-85, college: Missouri) finished with 15 points to pace the winners. Ukraine fell at 2-3 record but still made it into quarterfinal stage from the fourth position in the group. Sergii Gladyr (196-SG-88) opened the game with a four-point play to put Ukraine in charge. They opened an 8:3 lead early on. But Lithuania capped the period on a 15:5 run to secure a 3-point lead. Valanciunas and Donatas Motiejunas (213-F/C-90, agency: Interperformances) gave Lithuania a 25:17 lead midway through the second frame. Sergii Gladyr and Pustozvonov kept Ukraine close as they narrowed the deficit at 2-point mark 30:32 at halftime. The lead changed hands for numerous times throughout the third term. Neither side could gain a decisive lead. Darjus Lavrinovic capped the period with a three-pointer to give the Baltic team a 48:46 lead. Delininkaitis and Maciulis made it 56:53 for Lithuania hitting from beyond the arc. Darjus Lavrinovic and Linas Kleiza stretched the gap at 6-point mark 59:53 midway through the period. But Sergii Gladyr and Zaytsev narrowed the gap. Jeter Pooh dragged Ukraine within one 63:64. But Linas Kleiza drained a key three-pointer to give Lithuania a 4-point lead. Linas Kleiza and Donatas Motiejunas added four points in the dying seconds to seal the victory for Lithuania. Donatas Motiejunas tossed in 10 points, while Darjus Lavrinovic added 8 points for the winners. Sergii Gladyr responded with 18 points for Ukraine. Jeter Pooh had 10 points and 8 assists in the loss.
Serbia - France 77-65
Serbia wins Group E of the 2013 EuroBasket. They overcame France 77:65 and finished on top with 4-1 record. The latter fell at 3-2 record and finished third in the group. Alexis Ajinca (215-C-88, agency: Priority Sports) and Nenad Krstic (212-C-83) exchanged the early baskets, while Nedovic nailed three for 9:5 lead. Vladimir Stimac gave Serbia 19:15 late in the first quarter and Vladimir Stimac increased the lkead to 5 points early in the second period. Nicolas Batum (203-SF-88) and Diot tied it all at 23:23, while Alexis Ajinca gave France 25:24 advantage. Serbia however finished the first half with a 5-0 run for 38:31 halftime deficit. He nailed three for 46:35 and Djordje Gagic scored for 50:38. France erupted with an 7-0 run as Tony Parker reduced to 50:45. Nenad Krstic and Bjelica meanwhile closed the period at 60:51. Bogdanovic later scored 5 points in a row for Serbia that went on a 66:54 lead. They continue their dominance in the rest of the game and reached 77:65 win. Nenad Krstic stepped up with 19 points and Nemanja Nedovic (191-PG-91, agency: Beo Basket) shot 17. Bogdan Bogdanovic delivered 14, while Vladimir Stimac and Djordje Gagic added 8 each. Nicolas Batum, Nando De Colo (196-SG-87), Boris Diaw (203-PF-82) and Alexis Ajinca replied with 12 points each in a loss. Tony Parker ended up with 10 points.
Finland - Slovenia 92-76
Finland finished their EuroBasket campaign on a high note. They upset hosting Slovenia in the final game of the Second Stage of the tournament. Five players scored in double digits for Finland. Gerald Lee (208-C-87, college: ODU) stepped up with 17 points and 6 boards for the winners. Slovenia fell at 3-2 record and occupied the second position in Group F ladder. Finland silenced the fans in Ljubljana with a 9:0 start to the game. Slovenia responded with an 18:2 rally to spur ahead. The hosts finished the first period up by four points 26:22. Muric and Lakovic stretched the margin to 7 points early in the second frame. But Finland organized an 8:0 rally to jump ahead. Slovenia regained the lead however Ahonen capped the half with a three-pointer to level things up at 42. Finland opened the second half on a 14:2 rally to pull ahead. The visitors stretched the margin to 19 points 68:49 late in the period. But Slovenia managed to cut it to 15-point mark at the end of the term 56:71. Jure Balazic narrowed the deficit at 9-point mark 66:75 midway through the third term. Vidmar put the hosts within 7 points 68:75. But Ahonen and Sasu Salin (192-G-91) fired from beyond the arc to restore a double-digit lead for Finland. The visitors never looked back in the reminder of the contest cruising to the victory. Mikko Koivisto (194-G-87, college: NC-Greensboro) and Sasu Salin dropped 16 points each for the winners. Bostjan Nachbar responded with 15 points for Slovenia. Jure Balazic chipped in 14 points in the losing case.
Croatia - Greece 92-88 2OT
Croatia clinched the seventh straight win at the European Championship. They outlasted Greece in double-overtime drama in Ljubljana today to win Group F at 4-1 record. Greece fell at 1-4 record and was left outside the quarterfinal stage. Bojan Bogdanovic (203-SG-89, agency: XL Basketball Agency) finished with 22 points to lead the winners. Krunoslav Simon set things going with a three-pointer. The teams stayed within striking distance from each other throughout the first quarter. Bramos and Kavvadas made it 17:14 for the Hellenes late in the opening frame. But Draper capped the stanza with a jumper to narrow the gap to minimum. Draper opened the second term with a three-pointer to put Croatia in front. Draper and Andric made it 25:21 for the Croats. Greece soon erased the deficit and spurred ahead. But not for long as Bojan Bogdanovic scored quick five points and Tomic added a buzzer-beating layup to secure a 36:34 halftime lead for Croatia. Greece tipped off the second half with five consecutive points to pull ahead. But Croatia lived up to the challenge answering with an 8:0 run to secure a 46:41 lead midway through the third term. The teams traded baskets throughout the reminder of the period as Croatia secured a narrow 51:50 lead heading into the fourth term. The nervous action continued in the final term. Neither side was able to gain a crucial lead. Roko-Leni Ukic made it 65:61 for Croatia with just over four minutes remaining. But Vassilis Spanoulis and Ioannis Bourousis (213-C-83, agency: FCM) put the Hellenes within two points 67:69 with 43 seconds remaining. Ante Tomic (217-C-87, agency: XL Basketball Agency) sank one free throw to make it 70:67 with 21 seconds remaining in regulation. Zisis drained a three-pointer for Greece to level things up at 70 with 9 seconds to go. Croatia could not convert in the reminder of regulation and the team went into overtime. Bojan Bogdanovic opened the extra period with a layup but Zisis and Kaimakoglou stepped up for Greece to give them a 77:74 lead with 36 seconds to go. However Bojan Bogdanovic drained a big three-pointer to level things up at 77. Zisis could not score a layup at the buzzer and the teams entered the second overtime. Bojan Bogdanovic stepped up for Croatia at the start of the second overtime scoring six straight points. Rudez followed with a three-pointer to give Croatia an 86:79 lead. But Zisis stepped up once again for the Hellenes. He nailed five consecutive points and then Ioannis Bourousis followed with a layup to level things up at 86. Draper came up with a key layup and then Bojan Bogdanovic added two free throws to seal the winning outcome for Croatia. Ante Tomic posted 15 points and 12 rebounds, while Roko-Leni Ukic added 14 points in the winning effort. Ioannis Bourousis answered with 21 points and 9 rebounds for Greece. Vassilis Spanoulis had 18 points in the losing effort.
Italy - Spain 86-81 OT
Italy finished their EuroBasket Second Stage campaign with victory. They overcame Spain to finish third in Group F. Spain slipped at 2-3 record in the fourth position in the standings. Alessandro Gentile (198-G/F-92) nailed 25 points to pace the Azzurri. Marco Belinelli (196-G-86) and Datome looked unstoppable in the opening quarter. They ran the offence for the Azzurri as they opened a 13:5 lead. Soon the gap grew at 12-point mark 22:10. Italy secured a 24:12 lead after ten minutes. But Spain opened the second term on a 12:2 run to level things up. Alessandro Gentile and Cusin gave Italy a 35:31 lead but Spain quickly recover. They erased the deficit to even things at 37 after twenty minutes. Marc Gasol (216-C-85, agency: Interperformances) triggered a 12:0 run from Spain as they posted a 54:43 lead late in the third term. Fernando San Emeterio made it 56:45 for Spain at the end of the third quarter. Sergio Rodriguez extended the margin to 15 points early in the final term. But Italy used an 11:0 run to narrow the margin at just 2-point mark 62:66 with just over two minutes remaining. Rudy Fernandez stopped the rot for Spain. Marco Belinelli and Sergio Rodriguez exchanged baskets before Alessandro Gentile narrowed the deficit to two points. Sergio Rodriguez missed two free throws and Datome sank a late jumper to send the game into overtime. Marco Belinelli, Pietro Aradori (195-SG-88) and Alessandro Gentile gave Italy a 78:72 lead in the extra period. Spain narrowed the deficit but Alessandro Gentile and Datome went perfect from the stripe in the final seconds and sealed the win for Italy. Pietro Aradori provided 17 points, while Marco Belinelli added 16 points and 8 rebounds for the winners. Marc Gasol answered with 32 points and 10 rebounds for Spain. Sergio Rodriguez had 18 points in the defeat.
The basketball worlds reaction to Greeces elimination
Damn, only one of 8 teams won't qualify to FIBA World Cup...
I'd pick Ukraine to begging invite spots with Russia, Canada, Brazil, China, Germany, Turkey, Great Britain, and Greece...
The Eurocup is rigged without a doubt. Everyone knows Greece has the best players in the world and they didn't make it through only because of obvious racism.
it should be hard for france to overcome slovenia... lack of toughness and defensive "grinta".
Where is EuroBaller? Nothing to say about Greece not belonging in the 8 best teams in Europe? A team with so many stellar-but-not-in-the-NBA-because-of-racism players?