Referees: Ademir Zurapovic (BIH), Anastasios Piloidis (GRE), Matej Spendl (SLO)
Montenegro Too Much For Finland
Nikola Pekovic scored 24 points and Vladimir Dragicevic added 21 and 12 rebounds as Montenegro remained firmly in control of Group A of the EuroBasket qualifiers with a 91-71 victory over Finland.
Montenegro moved to 5-1, two wins clear of anyone else in the group, with a straightforward win over the shorthanded and overmatched Finns.
Pekovic was too much for Finland to handle all night, and his dunk put Montenegro on top 28-15 at the end of the first quarter.
They then scored the first seven points of the second period as the lead bulged to 20, 35-15.
Finland did their best to keep scrapping, with teenage star Sasu Salin nailing a three-pointer midway through the second period to cut the gap to 39-25, but Pekovic continued to punish them at the other end.
Montenegro simply had too many weapons, and they were able to rest their key men in the second half, with Pekovic's 24 points coming in just 22 minutes of action.
Salin led Finland with 15 points, while Gerald Lee added 13.
Quotes Montenegro vs. Finland
Montenegro coach Dusko Vujosevic: "I am very pleased with tonight's performance in Bar. We played well and achieved an excellent result. Although the point difference against Finns will not play a role it is very important to win and in this manner. Good thing is that no one has been injured and I am especially satisfied because this great audience in Bar has enjoyed some fine basketball. I would like to thank them once again because they created a great atmosphere in which it was pleasure to play. The Finns were more fresh at the beginning because they had a day off and we arrived here directly from two games on the road. Additionally, they showed their well-known toughness, but at the end our quality prevailed. It was our easiest game but only because all players gave their best and came into the match not underestimating the opponent for one single minute."
Montenegro player Ivan Maras: "Finland put up a fight. But we were very serious and in the end we won convincingly. This was an excellent overture before the last two games in our group and at the same time the most important. We would like to thank the wonderful audience in Bar for their great support during this match."