|Greg Brunner had 12 points on the night as one of five Reggio Emilia players to record double figures|
Reggio Emilia used a 14-1 fourth quarter run to power to an 86-75 home victory over Team TEHO Sport Kotka to secure first place in Group E and reach the Last 16.
All five starters scored in double figures for 4-1 Reggio Emilia, paced by 18 points from Troy Bell. Andrea Cinciarini added 14 and Greg Brunner had 12.
Kotka dropped to 2-3 despite 21 points from Sharaud Curry with Jukka Matinen scoring 17 and Ryan Ayers adding 16.
Reggio pulled ahead 6-0 and led 13-10 when Kotka used a 6-0 run to take their first lead. It went back and forth with Emilia up 22-18 and the guests leading 23-22 after one quarter.
The back and forth rhythm continued until Kotka's 12-0 run for a 38-30 advantage. Emilia answered with the next 10 points to regain the lead but trailed 41-40 at intermission.
Neither team could break away in the third quarter, which ended with Reggio up 54-53.
Kotka scored the first six points of the fourth quarter but Reggio punched right back with a 14-1 run for a 68-60 lead.
The margin was up to 10 points at 76-66 and grew to as many as 13 late in the game.
Team Teho Sport Kotka Head Coach Sami Toiviainen
"I'm very proud of my team, we had a great chance to win tonight and we played very well. We knew that if you let Grissin Bon play freely , it would have been very difficult to win the game. We saw the game Reggio played and we knew that this team have great reactions. In every case I'm very proud of the way my boys have faced a tough opponent."
Team Teho Sport Kotka Player Sharaud Curry
"Both teams played very hard. Grissin Bon was very good on attack, better than us. In away games, if you don't take the opportunities, it becomes very difficult to bring home the result."
Grissin Bon Player Andrea Cinciarini
"We didn't start the game in an aggressive way and this was a big mistake. I have a big part of the responsibility for this error. I played softly and I let Curry enter the game. In the last part of the game we started to be more aggressive, so we took some points ahead and we defended them. We had a great desire inside and we didn't give up. We had a big target: to pass the first group of EuroChallenge. Our club wanted it so much and we knew this and we wanted to reach this target. We are very happy that we did it, we passed the round and we did it as first in our group. The EuroChallenge gives us a great charge and security and it helps us also in the Italian Championship."
Grissin Bon Head Coach Max Menetti
"I am very satisfied, I made my compliments to the whole team. We played a vigorous game, to a high level. We have been very good not to give up, we understood what kind of game this was , it was a war and we fought. They play in a very physical way while we bet more on technique; in the third quarter we made adjustments and in the last one we played in a very vigorous way. We are first in the group, but this will not stop us: next week we're going to Holland trying to win there."