Russia Stage Comeback To Top France

10.07.2007

Russia used a 24-0 second half run to fight back from a 17-point third quarter deficit and knock off France 84-79 on Tuesday, remaining undefeated in Group E of the U20 European Championship Men.

Petr Gubanov paced five Russians in double figures with 17 points - seven of which came in the decisive spurt spanning the third and fourth quarters.

Andrey Vorontsevich scored six of his 16 points in the run while Alexey Shved hit for seven of his 10 points as Russia held France without a basket for eight minutes, 15 seconds.

The French led 18-13 after one period and used a 23-11 run to open a 46-35 lead at the break.

Nando De Colo's three-pointer gave Michel Gomez's French team a 59-42 advantage with 5:49 to play in the third period.

But Russia's defence caused four French turnovers to close the quarter on a 15-0 run to cut the deficit to 59-57 going into the fourth.

And Andrey Maltsev's side scored first seven points of the final period, pulling ahead 66-59 on Shved's three-pointer with 7:54 left.

The French finally scored again on Marc Judith's three-pointer at the 7:34 mark.

Russia led 80-76 two minutes left and Shved, Andrey Vorontsevich and Artur Urazmanov combined to make four of six foul shots in the final 40 seconds to complete the victory.

De Colo paced the French with 24 points while Judith had 19 points and eight rebounds, and Aaron Cel added 10 in a losing cause.

France dropped to 0-3 and face Lithuania on Wednesday, both team practically out of contest for Saturday's semi-finals.

Russia, meanwhile, are even with Slovenia atop Group E with a 3-0 record and can book their spot in the semis with a victory over Serbia on Wednesday.

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