KRKA Novo Mesto lost on Tuesday but hit back with a vengeance 48 hours later at Lukoil Academic to force a deciding third game in their EuroChallenge Quarter-Final.
Beaten by six points in Slovenia on Tuesday by the Bulgarians, Aleksandar Dzikic's KRKA travelled to Sofia and rolled to a 75-61 victory.
Goran Ikonic had 16 points for the winners while teammate Smiljan Pavic scored 13 and pulled down a season-high 14 rebounds.
Game 3 will be played on March 30 in Novo Mesto.
Zoran Dragic and Dusan Djordjevic also came up with big games for KRKA.
Dragic, whose brother Zoran plays for the Houston Rockets and is a Slovenia international, contributed 14 points and seven boards while Djordjevic had 10 points, five assists and six rebounds.
Two other KRKA players sparked a 14-2 run that put the visitors in command.
Leading 14-11, Bojan Krivec passed to Jure Balazic and he nailed a jumper.
Chris Booker and Balazic then drilled back-to-back three-balls to make it 22-11 in favor of KRKA.
When Pavic tipped in a miss by Dragic, the KRKA lead was 28-14.
Things got even worse for Jovica Arsic's side.
When Dragic, who scored 10 points in the first half, sank a jumper with 2:15 to go in the second quarter, the lead was 36-18.
Lukoil continued to fight, though, and clawed their way back to 51-44 by the end of the third quarter.
Twice the Bulgarian side pulled to within six points in the fourth quarter, the second time with 7:28 to go after two Brandon Heath free-throws.
But Ikonic went to the other end and buried a three-pointer before Djordjevic drew an unsportsmanlike foul from Veselin Veselinov and sank two free-throws.
With KRKA retaining possession, Pavic was fouled and made one of two at the charity stripe to extend the advantage back to 61-49.
Victory was never in doubt for KRKA the rest of the way.
The visitors dominated the boards, out-rebounding Lukoil 44-29.
KRKA also shot nine of 17 from long range compared to five of 28 for Lukoil.
Heath had a game-high 20 points in defeat.
Aleksandar Dzikic, head coach - KK KRKA NOVO MESTO:
"First of all I would like to congratulate my players. We didn't have even one normal practice after our last game against Lukoil because Booker was sick and we also had some problems with Djordjevic. To be honest I wasn't too optimistic before this game. We know that Lukoil is a good team with so many good individuals. We tried some things and today it worked, but it doesn't mean that it will also work on Wednesday when we play the final game for qualifying for the Final Four. We played good in the rebounding, we survived 22 turnovers and at the end we had pretty good shooting from the three point range."
Smiljqn Pavic, KK KRKA NOVO MESTO player:
"I would like to congratulate our boys and coaches for the big win. We believed that we could win here and we knew that we could play better than we played at home. We didn't lose our hope from the first to the last minute and we were up the whole game. At the end we were able to keep the score and we deserved to win."
Jovica Arsic, head coach - LUKOIL ACADEMIC:
"We played a very bad game, the first twenty minutes were simply catastrophic. According to the scouting that we had done we were supposed to trail Iconic on the screens, instead most of the times we tried to cut the distance by going over and he was able to take advantage. We were also supposed to play a way better defense from weak side so we don't let them pick up so many offensive rebounds. We were asleep for twenty minutes, allowing them to get 8 offensive rebounds for a half and from there on the game cannot be a normal one. If you let the opposing team run its game so easy, there's no way you cannot be nervous and there's no way you can avoid shooting so bad for three points. Tonight we had the worst shooting since we started the season back in September. We didn't play the way we're capable of playing and our opponent punished us for it. They're a good, disciplined team and they know what they're good at, they might not have great stars that play entertaining basketball but they are aware of their qualities and they give their best. We simply did not play as a team. In the first half we had a few offensive possessions where we shot the ball after the second pass, playing against their type of set defense. If we don't change a few things before the third game there's no way we can win. Congratulations for KRKA's win, they deserved to win. As you saw they played a better game than us tonight."