|Nemanja Nedovic added one more outstanding performance to his U20 European Championship résumé. The Serbia guard had 27 points on 61% shooting from the floor and dished out seven assists|
Serbia used a big day by Nemanja Nedovic to edge Croatia 80-79 in Day 3 of Group G to earn some breathing space in the fight against relegation.
The Serbs took a 3-0 record in the group and are close to secure their spot in Division A for the next year.
Croatia is back on the losing track and fell to 1-2 sharing the 2-3-4 spots with Austria and Lithuania.
Nedovic not only scored 27 points but also tied the score with four seconds to play and added the bonus from the foul line to save his team from their first loss in the 13-16 Classification Round.
The Serbian guard reached the 27 points by missing only two of his 13 attempts from two-point next to seven assists and four steals, while Danilo Andusic added 14.
Croatia saw Boris Barac with 23 points and Domagoj Bubalo added 18 points with seven boards.
It was a tough close game, as expected when these two teams meet in such circumstances.
Nedovic on one side and Barac on the other set the pulse right from the start and a lay-up by the later set the first quarter score on 18-20 in favor of Croatia.
Bubalo and Ivan Batur pushed the gap to eight, yet Branislav Djekic hit from the arc and Andjusic helped Serbia to take over the lead again and make it 40-39 at the half time break.
Nedovic was on fire after the break and with a dunk, a pair of jumpers and then another dunk fought against the Croats, yet on the other end waited Barac that was in a zone himself, and set Croatia with a 65-73 gap with 4:11 to play.
Nemanja Jaramaz and Nedovic combined the next seven points to make it just a one point game and Andjusic hit a bomb from distance to tie the score at 75-75 with 2:10 to play.
Each side added another bucket before Bubalo dunked to make it 77-79 in favor of his team with only 12 ticks on the game clock.
A time out by Serbia saw Nedovic attack the rim and with four seconds to play tied the score and then add the bonus shot from the charity stripe.
Croatia's last attempt fell short and moved Serbia closer to another year in Division A.
After the rest day Serbia will take on Lithuania and with a win could secure their future in Division A while Croatia will try to revenge Austria for the shocking loss in the first encounter.