Jeckyll & Hyde Turkey Advance

29.07.2011

U18 MEN

Ahmet Tuncer came off the bench to score 12 points including seven in a critical 16-1 fourth quarter run that pushed Turkey to an 80-70 victory over defending champions Lithuania to reach the semifinals of the U18 European Championship Men.

Samet Geyik had 20 points and eight rebounds and Tayfun Erülkü scored 12 points as Turkey stay alive for their first ever U18 title by reaching the semis for the fifth time since 2004. Turkey will face Spain in the semis with a spot in Sunday's final at stake.

Lithuania were dethroned despite 15 points from Tomas Lekunas, 11 points by Tauras Jogela and 10 each from Simonas Kymantas and Paulius Semeska.

Turkey started the game in fine fashion with a 9-3 lead and opened a 10-point cushion, 18-8. Lithuania cut the gap to five points but Turkey led 24-14 after one quarter.

The advantage grew to 12 points - 30-18 - before Lithuania fought back to within five points with a 9-2 surge. Turkey however remained in control and were ahead 43-31 at halftime.

Turkey pushed the lead to 46-33 but then suffered their usual third quarter struggles as Lithuania went on 13-4 and 9-0 runs to grab a 61-54 advantage after three quarters.

The Lithuania lead was 63-56 until Turkey went on a 16-1 run over more than 5 minutes with Tuncer scoring seven points as the Turks led 72-64. Turkey failed to score on five straight possessions - including three turnovers - but Lithuania could only get within 72-68.

Ceyik snapped the drought with a dunk and then Erbil Eroglu and Ugur Dokuyan made three of four free throws to put the game out of reach.


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