A tough trip to Russia and Rostov On Don was made even tougher for Dexia Mons Hainaut in their last game of Round II of the EuroCup on Tuesday night.
The Belgians' bags did not make it to Rostov with the team, finally showing up just a couple of hours before tip-off.
Dexia's woes were tempered by the fact that their main goal was already safe in the bag, a place in the quarter-finals of the EuroCup.
|Dragan Markovic's 19 points were not enough for Dexia|
Tuesday's game was about finishing in first place in Group K and the homecourt advantage in the play-offs.
Dexia won the first encounter between the two sides 83-77 and could afford to lose by as many as 6 points.
As it turned out, Rostov's 79-72 meant that the scores in the head to head match-up were identical and first place would be decided by goal average in Round II. The nod went to Rostov thanks to their +31 goal difference, with Dexia agonisingly close at +27.
The home side started the game strongest as they finished ahead 28-25 at the quarter and 44-43 at the half.
Dexia fought back to take a 1-point lead into the final quarter, but Rostov finished with a 21-13 run in the fourth period to take the game.
Rostov are number two in the EuroCup in rebounding this season and they proved to be stronger on the boards, out-rebounding Dexia (who were without leading rebounder George Evans) 37-28.
Despite a subpar night from Jose Jaime Lloreda Ferron who had season lows in points (9) and rebounds (4), Rostov got impressive efforts from Afik Nissim (14 points) and Mark Dickel (9 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists).
Dragan Markovic led Dexia with 19 points.