Turkey recovered from a poor shooting start and a big double-digit deficit to defeat Greece 64-54, sending the hosts to their second loss in a row and eliminating them from semi-final contention.
The 2005 champions were an abysmal four of 21 (19%) from the field in the first 14 minutes of the game while Greece were a much more impressive 14 of 23 (61%) as they raced to a 30-11 lead early in the second quarter.
Lithuania took a double-digit lead early on and held off Greece’s rallies to hand the hosts their first loss of the tournament, 72-59, and inch closer to a place in the semi-finals.
Behind the solid play of Saulius Kulvietis, Marius Linartas’ men turned a 9-7 deficit into a 19-9 lead and it proved to be the turning point as they did not trail again the rest of the way.
Greece survived a furious third quarter run by Ukraine to take an 80-64 win in their qualifying round game at Rethimno tonight.
Gennadiy Dzyuba, who didn’t take a shot in the first half, made four three-pointers while Maks Konate did some damage inside as Ruban Oleg’s men fought back from a 41-30 half-time deficit, to trail by just six, 58-52, heading into the final period.
A 7-0 run at the start of the second half proved the turning point for Greece as they went on to beat Latvia 66-43 and finish the group stages unbeaten.
The win means that the hosts top Group C in Ierapetra, much to the delight of the local fans but also of head coach Giorgios Vlassopoulos.
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