Bourges Shut Down Brno In Fourth To Advance

04.02.2009

Bourges make no apologies for being a tough-as-nails team on defense and that approach certainly paid a huge dividend on Wednesday as they shut down Gambrinus Brno in the fourth quarter to win their pivotal play-off showdown 67-62.

With 7:09 left in the game, Gambrinus were in the driving seat after Eva Viteckova had given them a 59-53 lead and Hamchetou Maiga Ba's basket extended the advantage to eight with 5:51 to go.

Brno, due in large part to the Bourges defense, scored just one point the rest of the way.

The French giants, meanwhile, had no trouble scoring.

They cut the deficit to 61-56 on a three-ball from Katarina Manic and Emmeline Ndongue followed that with a lay-up before Cathy Melain nailed a three-pointer to knot the game at 61-61 with 3:13 to go.

Ndongue then had a three-point play to put Bourges in front for good before Manic added two free throws.

Viteckova and Manic each split a pair of free throws in the final 36 seconds for the final points of the game.

France point guard Celine Dumerc was five of seven from behind the arc and had 23 points.

She also came up with three of Bourges' 10 steals.

Manic scored 17 and Ndongue 15.

Ndongue, who had nine off Bourges' 29 rebounds, erased the painful memory of last year's defeat to Gambrinus at the Final Four.

She had a chance to hit the game-winner at the end of regulation of that game after catching a pass at midcourt and dribbling towards the Bourges basket but stumbled just before time expired and wasn't able to score.

Brno then won the game in overtime.

In Wednesday night's defeat for Gambrinus, Zuzana Zirkova had 19 points and Maiga Ba 15.

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