Latvian side Skonto put up a good performance at home against Ural Great, but the Russians proved too strong, holding off Skonto to win 87:95.
Skonto began the game slowly, falling quickly behind and as it turned out, they would come close but never retain the lead for the rest of the game. Ural Great jumped out to a 4:10 advantage and finished the quarter up, 14:26.
An 8-0 run from the home tome brought the home team to within 4 points of Ural Great, 22:26. As would be the story for the remainder of the game, Ural Great answered with scores from Valeri Daineko and Ksistof Lavrinovic to re-establish the lead at 9 points, 22:31.
Again Skonto fought back and a dunk from wunderkind Andris Biedrins took his team to within 2 points at 34:36. The halftime score was 36:40.
Ural Great held on in the 3rd quarter to finish ahead 63:72 and Skonto were running out of time to try to get the win.
Skonto actually came mightily close to knocking off Ural Great in the fourth, and it was Biedrins who led the charge. The 18 year old hit his 2nd 3-pointer of the season (he finished the night 2/3 after not attempting any in his previous 6 games) to get his team to within 1 point, 77:78.
Biedrins scored again and assisted on a Hill basket, but Ural Great still held the lead, 81:82. Maybe the pressure got to the youngster, and he missed 2 free throws on the following possession. Lavrinovic hit a 3-pointer for Ural Great and the Russians pulled away to win 87:95.
Biedrins finished with a game high 28 points for Skonto.
Lavrinovic, a 210cm center, had a great game for Ural Great, with 25 points, 14 rebounds and 3 blocks.
Michael Johnson was named MVP for his 27-point, 10-rebound, 5-assist, 5-steal performance.