Entente Orleanaise treated their fans to an opening night win in the EuroChallenge against a very good Dexia Mons-Hainaut.
|Aldo Curti was ice cold on shooting but helped his team with 5 assists and three rebounds in the win|
Troy Bell had 28 points to lead the French team to an 82-76 Group H victory.
Bell, a veteran guard from America, scored from everywhere.
He was eight of 15 from the floor, including five of 10 from long range, and he also made all seven of his attempts from the free-throw line.
One of his biggest shots came after Justin Cage's lay-up had trimmed the Entente Orleanais lead to 69-68 with 4:15 to go.
Cage drew a foul on the play and could have tied the contest but missed his free-throw.
Sixteen seconds later and Bell caught a pass from Aldo Curti and drilled a three-pointer.
The good shooting was contagious because Maleye Ndoye then ripped the nets from long range for the hosts to make it a seven-point lead.
Dexia fell behind by 10 but got two Cage free-throws and a Quincy Taylor three-pointer to cut the deficit to 80-75.
Marcus Hatten drew a foul but only made the second of two free-throws to reduce the arrears to 80-76.
Ron Lewis and Shan Foster then had opportunities following two consecutive turnovers by the hosts but each missed from the arc and Entente Orleanaise claimed an 82-76 victory.
While Dexia forced a couple of late turnovers, they had a problem holding onto the ball themselves.
Arik Shivek's side ended up turning the ball over 24 times.
Dexia Player Sebastien Bellin:
"In basketball, to play it often on details. It's bad to lose the match after leading by 12 points in Orleans that is not an easy place. We were very well prepared for this game, we knew exactly what they were doing. We lost the match due to a lack of concentration."
"We knew exactly what to do, and we did. I am happy of my players, they were able to play face to face with Orleans. The gap is very important in these games. We can not be glad of losing, but it's a good thing to lose by only 6 points."
Orléans Player Maleye Ndoye:
"For the moment victory is very important, how you acquired it, whatever. It's hard to explain the relaxations we had."
Orléans Coach Hervé Philippe:
"We have a week with 2 home games very important. The victory is most important now,
Mons plays basketball well, they not only played well, but they also returned fire.
This is the first time I felt that the team let go (end of first half). We have a group with 4 teams that have the same level. We are glad to launch the European Cup with a victory."