A strong second half from Hapoel Tel Aviv was enough for the Israeli team to secure their 10th win of the FEL, along with 2nd place in Group D and a play-off berth against Cypriot champions EKA Lemesos.
The game was tough in the first quarter, after 8-2 for Hapoel, the Latvians turned the score in their favour (14-18). But this was the last time Skonto led the game. Hapoel took the lead right back and won the first period 28-24.
In the second quarter the hosts increased their lead slowly but surely. At the break the guests were almost down by ten points (53-44).
The second half was determined by the strong defense of Hapoel. Skonto had to work really hard for each point they scored. They were held to just 23 points in the second part of the match.
The strong defense gave Hapoel's offense another boost and the hosts got easy points. Even with bench players on the court Hapoel scored 46 points and won by 32.
Virginijus Praskevicius scored 26 points for Hapoel, a season high.Yaniv Green and Michael Wright added 16 apiece.
19 year old forward Kaspars Berzins netted 18 points for Skonto.
MVP of the game: Virginijus Praskevicius (Tel Aviv)
Erez Edelshtain, Head Coach, Hapoel Tel Aviv:
"We made the game easy for us by playing hard defense during the second half of the match."
Raivo Otersons, Assistant Coach, Skonto Riga:
"We just couldn't play as well as we did in our last games."