Artland Dragons inflicted the first defeat of the EuroChallenge Last 16 stage on BC FMP Belgrade, coming out on top 82-72.
The Dragons led by as many as 18, 69-51, when Darius Hall made a jump-shot at the end of the third quarter.
Although Belgrade closed the gap in the dying minutes, they never threatened to catch the hosts, scoring the final six points of the game after the result had long been decided.
Toby Bailey led the Dragons with 25 points, while Hall had 16, Darren Fenn 13 and Nathan Peavy 10.
Belgrade got 14 points from Mladen Jeremic, Pedja Stamenkovic and Bojan Radetic both added 13 and Branko Lazic finished with 10.
Thorsten Leibenath, Artland Dragons coach:
"I am extremely happy with this win today. FMP is a very strong team, we watched them in their domestic Cup competition last weekend where they beat Red Star Belgrade and even had a chance to beat the European powerhouse, Partizan Belgrade. There is a reason why they are in the first spot in our group. We took good advantage of the fact that they were tired. We had a lot more offensive rebounds than usually and a lot more steals also. I told our big guys to attack and that's what they did although Belgrade has some strong big guys. [Our] 61 percentage from two point range shows that we did a good job there. There's no doubt that Toby Bailey had a great performance. I knew he would not have two bad days in a row and today we saw more of the Toby Bailey we know.“
"I think we played very well. We knew that we had to come out and play aggressive defense and take advantage of the fact that they were tired. We did a good job in the paint and got the threes going. I was extremely motivated because I didn't do so well against Zagreb, where I had the chance to win the game. So I wanted to make up for that and think I did a good job.“Vlade Djurovic, head coach FMP Belgrade:
„The Dragons deserved the victory. We were extremely tired, we were dead, because this was our fourth game in five days. We came back to Belgrade at 3 a.m. and had to leave at 5 a.m. to go to Germany. Here Lufthansa was on strike so we had a six hour bus ride and didn't practice well last night. The Dragons are a very good team, but I think that we will still finish in first place in our group. We have two home games left and only need to win one to be first and this is what we want. I was very satisfied with my team at the [domestic] Cup [Finals]. Today we played without Covic, Milutinovic, Dimic and Protic. Protic tried, but couldn't play any longer. I wish the Dragons good luck. It is a nice place here and I like the atmosphere in this arena and this small town.“Predrag Samardziski, FMP Belgrade center:
"We played the best we could. It was our fourth game in five days, because we played in the National Cup finals this weekend against very strong teams. We barely lost in the final against Partizan. Everything has its own price. We played without four important players. But the Dragons are a good team and they wanted the win a little bit more than we did.“