Defeat Kills Off Keravnos’ Last Hope

11.12.2012

EUROCHALLENGE

Vukasin Mandic (CSU Asesoft Ploiesti)
Vukasin Mandic and CSU Asesoft Ploiesti signed off their EuroChallenge campaign with a win over Keravnos

Keravnos' slim hopes of reaching the Last 16 of the EuroChallenge ended in a 90-87 defeat to CSU Asesoft Ploiesti in their final Group B game.

Although Joensuun Kataja lost, as Keravnos required to have any chance, they still needed victory and a 55-point swing to sneak into the Last 16.

As it was, neither came close to happening as Ploiesti came back in the fourth quarter to record their first win in the group.

Keravnos looked like at least finishing with a win as they went in with a 48-37 lead at half-time and then went 56-43 up on Julian Vaughn's dunk early in the third period.

But Ploiesti finished the period on a 12-4 that saw them close the gap to just 66-64 on Catalin Burlacu's three-pointer.

Vladimir Tica then tied it to start the fourth and Ivars Timermanis' three gave them the lead.

That set up a tense fourth quarter as Keravnos held on to Ploiesti's coattails to prevent a breakaway.

The teams were tied at 79-79 with 3:38 to go before Burlacu's three highlighted a 7-0 Ploiesti spurt.

Antonio Crocker responded with a three to make it 86-82 with 23 seconds left but Burlacu and Robert Nyakundi hit key free throws down the stretch, and Lawrence Kinnard missed a desperate late heave for Keravnos.

Tica poured in 30 points to lead Ploiesti, with Burlacu adding 25.

Crocker had 19 points to lead Keravnos while Bobby Maze had 18, Vaughn 13 and Panagiotis Trisokkas 10.


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