Hosts Greece booked their place in the quarter-finals of the UMCOR U18 European Championship Men thanks to a 76-71 win over Russia.
Alexandros Sigkounas came up with a huge performance by scoring seven of his 18 points in the final two minutes of an intense contest that would send the winner to the quarter-final round and the loser to the classification stage.
Sigkounas' lay-up with 1:49 remaining gave Greece a 69-64 lead.
|Alexandros Sigkounas was the hero for Greece.|
Following a basket by Ivan Neluyubov of Russia, Sigkounas hit a three-pointer from the left corner to put his team in command with a 72-66 lead and 1:03 remaining.
The 200-cm small forward iced the game by hitting two free-throws with three seconds remaining to make it a two possession game.
"I knew I would make those shots - I was ready for it," said Sigkounas.
As the final buzzer sounded, players celebrated their quarter-final berth in front of their home supporters in Argostoli.
"I am so happy now," said Sigkounas.
"We won this game because we played as a team and because we played with a lot of heart and spirit."
"Our basic goal was to qualify for the quarter-final round and now we have to take it game by game," added Greece coach Manos Manouselis.
Sigkounas also had nine assists and seven rebounds.
"Alex (Sigkounas) is a great competitor and I think he will continue the great tradition of Greek basketball players," said Manouselis.
Serbia & Montenegro 90, Slovenia 59
Serbia & Montenegro look like the best team in the UMCOR U18 European Championship Men after their third straight lopsided victory.
This time Slovenia was the victim of Serbia and Montenegro's powerful inside duo of Vladimir Dasic and Miroslav Raduljica who scored 24 and 21 points respectively.
Serbia & Montenegro shot 61.5 percent from the field on two-point field goals.
They took control of the game in the third quarter by outscoring Slovenia 25-9.