Lukoil Academic got a dominating performance from their Latvian center Kaspars Kambala and some big plays from Brandon Heath and Brandon Bowman to beat Tartu Rock and seal a place in the Last 16 of the EuroChallenge.
Kambala had 19 points and 13 rebounds as the Bulgarian team clinched a 74-64 Group C victory.
The Sofia outfit raced into a 17-6 lead by the end of the first quarter and looked to be on their way to a comprehensive win but teams in the Baltics score points in bunches and Tartu Rock are no exception.
They came back to trail 31-25 at the break.
Lukoil, who lost their first game in the EuroChallenge last week in Portugal in overtime to Sport Lisboa e Benfica, then got a spark from Heath at the start of the second half when he made two consecutive lay-ups,
Todor Stoykov followed with another for a 37-27 lead.
Tartu Rock continued to scrap and with 4:48 to go drew to within 61-57 on Rain Veideman's jumper.
Bowman's dunk ignited a 6-0 run for the hosts and this time, they stayed in command.
Bowman finished with 18 points and Dominic James poured in 17 while also handing out a game-high five assists.
Tartu's hopes of progressing to the next phase died with this defeat - their fourth in five games.
George Tsintsadze and Veideman each had 12 points for Tartu Rock.
"Tough game, the home team showed the initiative early on and we were trailing throughout the whole game. We had our chances on a couple of situations, going down to 4 or 5 points but then on the right time Lukoil executed really well. We made a couple of easy mistakes defensively and then, at the end we also took a couple of risky decisions and they were able to punish us for them. I think Lukoil deserved to win. We tried our best but they were better today."
Janar Talts, Tartu University Rock player:
"It's not easy to play against a good team such as Lukoil, especially when they play good basketball and have good players on every position. We made too many small, silly mistakes and against this kind of team this is already crucial. We cannot play this way if we want to win, especially here, against this team. Lukoil deserved to win, we tried to prove ourselves but we lost. Who knows, maybe next time we'll beat them."
Jovica Arsic, head coach - LUKOIL Academic:
"I'm pleased with the final result, but we did some mistakes in defense and we allowed Tartu to pick up too many boards under our basket. I tried to give some more minutes to the players that did not play that much on the game against Levski, but things didn't really work out. Tension was definitely felt within our team and this didn't allow us to show our real capabilities. We're going out for a win in our next game against Lugano, so that we can guarantee the 1st place in the group.
Kaspars Kambala, LUKOIL Academic player:
"We did not show our game. We did a lot of substitutions and perhaps this didn't allow us to win by a more significant lead. Even early in the game we were up by 10 points which led to getting too loose and our opponent took the maximum out of it. I believe that qualifying to the Final Four is an absolutely achievable goal and it won't be a surprise, because we haven't even shown our real capabilities yet."