Austria Hold Off Denmark For Road Win



24. Rasid Mahalbasic (Austria)
Rasid Mahalbasic was Austria's top scorer with 23 points, adding 10 rebounds

Austria held on for an 80-72 win at Denmark on Sunday, their second victory in as many games in Group C of the EuroBasket 2015 1st Qualification Round.

The Austrians stunned their hosts with a particularly strong start to the encounter, as they scored 17 of the first 20 points in the game to establish a firm grip on proceedings.

Denmark seemed shell-shocked from that early declaration of intentions and struggled offensively, for Austria to extend their lead to 42-21 midway through the second frame.

The guests' advantage was reduced to 16 points at the interval but still they remained in total control and seemed well-positioned to cruise to a comfortable victory on the road, until the hosts decided to launch an assault.

Denmark went on a 19-3 run either side of the third buzzer to get back into the game and came within just one point for the first time on the night, 71-70 on an Alexander Birketoft lay-up with 5:17 left on the clock.

But that was as close as they would come as Austria, who had led uninterruptedly since tip-off, were not willing to let this one slip.

They passed the ball inside to big man Rasid Mahalbasic who gave his team some breathing space with two baskets in quick succession, and on the defensive end they did not allow their hosts to score a single point in the final three minutes.

Just like in the opening game against Luxembourg, Mahalbasic collected a double-double for Austria, this time of 23 points and 10 rebounds.

Jason Detrick finished with 18 points and Davor Lamesic had 17 points for the winners, while Denmark's Esben Reinholt led all scorers with 25 points in a losing effort.


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