In tonight's clash between the two undefeated teams in Group C, VBM-SGAU Samara defeated Lotos Gdynia 66:77 (22:4, 10:25, 10:32, 24:16) in Gdynia.
The Game MVP went to Ilona Korstine of Samara.
|Deanna Nolan Lotos VBW Clima Gdynia|
Krzysztof Koziorowicz, Lotos' head coach, was still remembering the hard lesson his team received from Samara in the final of FIBA World League in September. Lotos, playing without Margo Dydek, lost that final game against VBM-SGAU 67:83.
To avoid a repeat of that result Gdynia, this time with Dydek on the team, started very strong. Thanks to an outstanding defence the local side were able to run a few fast breaks and gained a big lead early in the game. The Fans in the GOSiR arena had expected a close game however their team led 22:4 after 10 minutes.
"It was one of the greatest 10 minutes in the history of the club", said the Russian coach at the press conference. "My team could not make a shot over Margo beacause they were afraid of her. Her blocks and rebounds let Gdynia score many easy points with fast breaks."
Later Gdynia started to lose their momentum and power in both offence and defence, so that the Russian team, led by Ilona Korstine, came back to just 3 points right before halftime (32:29).
The third quarter was the decider for the final result. Samara whipped Gdynia 32:10 over the 10 minute period. The Gdynia players got really tired, mainly because of the lack of help from the bench.
With Dydek resting on the bench after a full 20 minute perfomance in the first half, and with Bibrzycka playing with an knee injury and Ewelina Kobryn as the only post player who could act as back up for Dydek, it was almost impossible to face the Russian advance.
Gdynia managed to win the final 10 minutes 24:16 to avoid a complete humiliation.