The deciding day in Group D resulted in smiling faces on the Serbian bench after the team beat Germany 68-61 to stay in the race for the medals at Siemens Arena in Vilnius, Lithuania on Saturday afternoon.
Serbia jumps to a 2-1 record that might even be enough for the top spot in the group, while Germany dropped to 0-3 and will play in the Classification Round against the relegation to Division B.
|Serbia Head Coach Vladimir Jovanovic is not happy with his team's performances so far|
Despite the win the mood in the Serbian camp isn't at peak, following the performance in the first games.
"Today we didn't play well, just like in all the other games in the group," said the Serbian coach Vladimir Jovanovic.
"The good thing is that we won, but if we want to play better and compete in the next rounds we'll have to play with more energy and passion," he summarized.
Bogdan Bogdanovic led Serbia with 15 points and 4 hits from the perimeter while Vukasin Petkovic added 14.
Patrick Heckmann was the top scorer of Germany with 27 points in 29 minutes and a great performance overall.
"It's a shame we brought the needed intensity only today," shared coach Kay Blümel of Germany.
"If we had played like this in the previous games, I believe we were in a totally different situation right now.
"We played good defense and had the needed energies, but we didn't shoot as well as we should and that's what cost us the game," he concluded referring to only 14.3% from the arc made by his team.
Serbia wasn't in a great shooting day as well but stepped up in the closing minutes when the game was on the line.
Down 51-52 with 5 minutes still on the game clock, Serbia found their rhythm.
The next 4 shots by the Serbs were all from long distance, and all sank in to complete a 12-0 run that decided the game.
Petkovic led the way for Serbia in the first quarter, enough for a 21-14 lead, but Germany stepped up on defense and limited their opponent on only 9 more points until the break.
Heckmann attacked the rim again and again, and put his team on top, before dishing a great assist for a dunk by Dennis Kramer, and a 26-31 score.
Serbia cut the margin to one at the break, and used back-to-back three pointers by Bogdanovic to reach a 46-38 lead midway in the 3rd quarter.
It was once again Heckmann who made the difference and put Germany above again, before the rain of three pointers by Serbia made the difference.