Lithuania Hand Turkey First Loss

02.09.2011

EUROBASKET 2011

Turning Point: With Lithuania leading 69-67 with 1:18 to go, Emir Preldzic drew an unsportsmanlike foul from Darius Songaila. Preldzic split two free-throws and then missed a layup. At the other end, Songaila made two from the charity stripe to hand Lithuania a 71-68 lead. Predldzic then committed a backcourt violation as Lithuania went on to win.

Game Hero: Lithuania's bench. They scored 33 points to just 16 for Turkey.

Stats Don't Lie: Turkey were three of 18 (17%) from three-point range while Lithuania finished five of 12 (42%). Lithuania outrebounded Turkey 31-30.



Lithuania clinched their third straight win at the EuroBasket with a 75-68 Group A victory over Turkey on Friday.

The hosts, which struggled in a tournament-opening triumph over Great Britain, overcame one of the top sides in the world with a balanced attack and plenty of hustle.

Lithuania coach Kestutis Kemzura got a huge contribution from the bench.

The non-starters provided 33 points on the night to just 16 for Turkey's reserves.

The game hung in the balance when Darius Songaila, who led Lithuania with 12 points, was called for an unsportsmanlike foul on Emir Preldzic with the tournament hosts up 69-67 with 1:18 to go.

Preldzic did not take advantage, splitting two free-throws and then missing a layup.

At the other end, Songaila drew a foul and made two from the charity stripe to hand Lithuania a 71-68 lead with 40 seconds remaining.

Preldzic then committed a backcourt violation and Lithuania secured victory by making free-throws down the stretch.

Turkey, who were led by Ersan Ilyasova's 20 points, were just three of 18 (17%) from three-point range while Lithuania finished five of 12 (42%).

Lithuania edged the rebounding battle, 31-30.

A raucous crowd of 5,500 fans at the Panevezys Arena yelled from start to finish.
 


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