|Endene Miyem recorded a double-double of 20 points and 14 rebounds to lead Bourges to victory|
Bourges Basket made amends for missing out on last year's Final Eight by punching the last remaining ticket this time around, with a hard-fought 66-59 success against Wisla Can-Pack.
The triumphant scenes on the final buzzer were in stark contrast to the disappointment of being knocked out last season by Rivas Ecopolis and also from the first game of the series with Wisla, which resulted in a home loss.
But, following up their win in Krakow, Bourges managed to finish this deciding game with the momentum. The story of the night was teenage guard Romaine Bernies scoring 12 points in 16 minutes as well as having a big say in the closing minutes.
Despite having lost head coach Jose Hernandez after almost four years in charge, Wisla started brilliantly to leave the home fans a little concerned.
With Alana Beard back from injury, they raced into a commanding 17-6 lead, Beard making several big plays to underline how the hosts would have another tricky night in store.
It was during the second period when Bourges finally came alive in earnest, managing to post a 19-6 run either side of half-time to wrestle the initiative away from the visitors and move 36-31 in front.
Bourges then allowed Wisla back into the game after they scored 11 of the next 15 points, although the contest became tied at 55-55 with just three minutes left on the game clock.
Young Bernies made a big play at the business end of the game and also managed to contribute from the free-throw line as the home side finished strongly to deny Wisla back to back Final Eight appearances.
Endene Miyem was outstanding with 20 points and 14 rebounds for the French side, whilst Tina Charles corralled her customary double-double for Wisla with 19 points and 16 rebounds.
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Wisla head coach Artur Golanski:
"It was a difficult game. We started well but it was very complicated to keep the same average and the same level within the game; the team is tired. Bourges played a very good
Wisla player Anke De Mondt:
"Bourges' team have a lot of good players, national team players. They are always fighting
and never giving up. Yes, we were very excited about this game, but it was difficult to fight today."
Bourges head coach Valerie Garnier:
"Today, it was the reverse scenario of the first two games, but we won. I like it. We led the rebounds with 15 offensive ones; I'm really proud of my team. We might have been better on the shooting, but overall it was a good game."
Bourges player Celine Dumerc:
"We won this series in a hard but nice way, losing the first game in Bourges and fighting in the two following ones. I'm very happy to see a team victory with all the players on the top."