Dexia Mons-Hainaut thrashed CSK-VVS Samara 92-66 on Tuesday to take a big step closer to the EuroCup Final Four.
Great Britain international Nate Reinking led a balanced Mons scoring attack with 16 points.
|Marque Perry had 24 points for Samara in the loss.|
Lenzly and Sullivan are also British internationals.
Samara led by as many as five points on three occasions in the opening period and were still ahead at 23-19 at the start of the second quarter when Dexia grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck.
Sullivan, arguably the Belgian side's best player in the EuroCup this season, buried a jump shot to spark a 9-0 run that was capped by a Lenzly lay-up.
Samara then surged back into a 31-30 lead with Marque Perry scoring five of his game-high 24 points.
Potter replied with five straight, including a three-ball, to start a 7-0 run that put Mons in front for good.
Sullivan finished the half with four of Dexia's last six points to give his team a 43-36 lead at the break, the Belgian team reeled off the first seven points of the third quarter for a 14-point advantage.
Samara managed to close the gap to 55-50, but the hosts finished the third quarter with a 6-2 spurt and then delivered the knockout punch in the first 4:12 of the final frame, outscoring the Russian side 13-2.
Reinking's three-pointer made it 74-54 and Dexia were never under threat for the remainder of the contest.
Winning coach Chris Finch will have been thrilled with his team's effort on the boards as they out-rebounded Samara 42-27.
The Dexia defense also harassed Samara into committing 18 turnovers.
Another area in which the home side excelled in front of their capacity 3,500 crowd was free throw shooting. They made 19 of 23 (82.6%) while Samara were nine of 15 (60%).
Chris Finch, Mons Hainaut Coach:
"We met with difficulties in the start of the game,and we had to wait for the second quarter to play better.It wasn't easy,because Ben Ebong received two fouls in less than one minute at the beginning and Roger Huggins compensated a little for his lack of offense with good rebounding."
"Finally, all the team played very good defense but it's sure we were inexplicably nervous at the beginning.
Maybe it was the pressure on the team which plays first at home. In the second half I told my guys they must free themselves,and play fast and easy,and I think we were very good in the last quarter."
"Now,we have to be concentrated on the next game of the championship before thinking about the second leg in Samara. I'm not afraid,because I know we travel pretty well, and more, the pressure changed sides. We already went to Turkey, Ukraine and Russia before and I think we have taken a step to the Final Four."
Valeriy Tikhonenko, Samara Coach:
"First, I want to congratulate the coach of Mons for a good game from his team, but I think we had deficiency in the rebounds especially after a very good first quarter. In the second half, we came within five points of our opponents, but turnovers cost us. Of course,the way of playing a zone in defense puts us in difficulties, not because we're not accustomed to that way of defending, but Perry didn't find the good solutions, contrary to the first half. Now,we know what we have to do for the second leg, and it will allow us to come back in Belgium in a fortnight... I would like to also say that we lost a lot of rebounds, especially on offense and it didn't give us second chances."