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Lotos Fall To Brno And Czech Out Of Europe

26 March 2005

Taj McWilliams (Gambrinus JME Brno)
Taj McWilliams (Gambrinus JME Brno)
Gambrinus Brno coach Jan Bobrovsky predicted his team would reach the FIBA Europe League Final Four and his players proved him correct as they beat Lotos Gdynia on Thursday.

The Czechs rolled to a 62-52 triumph with American star Taj McWilliams pouring in a game-high 20 points and pulling down 13 rebounds.

They now face Hungarian outfit MiZo-Pecsi in the semi-finals after the Pecs team defeated Bourges in their last eight tie.

Title favourites VBM-SGAU Samara take on Lietuvos Telekomas Vilnius in the other semi-final.

Polish outfit Lotos made things hard on themselves from the off in Brno, scoring just five first-quarter points.

But they overcame the slow start and pulled level at 46-46 at the end of the third quarter.

However, Bobrovsky's team held their opponents to just six points over the final 10 minutes to seal victory which has put them into the club's fifth Final Four since the 1999-2000 campaign.

A player like Powell should not make a mistake like that
Jan Bobrovsky
Lotos had sent the quarter-final tie to a deciding third game with an 87-72 victory in Poland, and Bobrovsky admitted: "We were little bit better in this game.

"The game of Gdynia depends on (Elaine) Powell, and she was limited by foul trouble. A player like Powell should not make a mistake like that."

Powell, who had 23 points in Lotos' Game Two victory, had to go to the bench after picking up four fouls and she was eventually sent to an early shower with just 13 points and one assist.

"The game could have been different if she had participated in some important moments," Bobrovsky said.

Czech international Eva Viteckova also came up big for Gambrinus in the critical moments.

Offense of Marija Micovic against Eva Viteckova
Eva Viteckova
"Two three-pointers from Viteckova helped us a lot after she came into the game," Bobrovsky said.

Lotos Gdynia head coach Krystof Koziorowicz singled out Viteckova as the difference.

"I am disappointed," he said.

"We had a chance to win this series in Game Three. The most important moment of this game was at the end of the third quarter when Viteckova scored her baskets."

Viteckova, who will play for her country this summer at the Eurobasket Women in Turkey, played down her contributions.

"I do not think that I was the decisive factor in our win," she said to www.basket.idnes.cz.

"I simply wanted to play well. I played poorly in the first two games and I felt that I had to have a good game. I am satisfied with my performance."

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