Besiktas Book First Ticket To Final Four



44. Pops Mensah-Bonsu (Besiktas Milangaz)
A dominant Pops Mensah-Bonsu finished with 25 points and 17 rebounds for Besiktas Milangaz

Besiktas Milangaz nearly blew a huge lead but steadied themselves over the last eight minutes of the fourth quarter and beat Artland Dragons on Thursday evening to reach the EuroChallenge Final Four.

Getting a 25-point, 17-rebound performance from Great Britain international Pops Mensah-Bonsu, Besiktas prevailed 77-63.

Winners of the Turkish Cup already this summer, Besiktas are now just two victories away from celebrating a EuroChallenge title.

Artland did themselves justice with a gritty display that will have pleased the fans back home, especially as they had to play without star Nathan Peavy.

The sweet-shooting forward had to return home to the United States after Tuesday night's one-point loss in Germany following the death of a member of his family.

Besiktas went in front by 21 two minutes into the second half but Artland dug in their heels and fought back.

Anthony King's lay-up with 8:56 remaining trimmed the Besiktas lead to 58-55 and the fans grew restless.

Adam Morrison went to the other end and calmly sank a mid-range jumper for Besiktas before Zoran Erceg split a pair of free-throws to take the advantage back to six.

Mensah-Bonsu then stamped his authority on the contest by scoring eight unanswered points for Besiktas - four at the line and two with a thunderous dunk - as Besiktas went back in front, 69-55.

Artland continued to battle but this time, Stefan Koch's team wasn't able to get back into the game.

They lost the series, 2-0.

Erceg finished with 19 points while Artland were led by Holston's 15.