Augustus-Inspired Gala Stun Kursk To Reach Final

19.03.2009

Seimone Augustus poured in a season-high 38 points - one less than Dynamo Kursk scored as a team on Thursday - to lead Galatasaray to a resounding victory in Istanbul and into the EuroCup Women Final.

Needing to overcome a 14-point deficit from the first leg, the great Augustus fired the Turkish giants to a 62-39 win - good enough for a nine-point triumph on aggregate.

The win means that Galatasaray will now face Cras Basket Taranto for the title because the Italians booked their place with a 10-point success on Thursday at Dynamo Moscow.

The EuroCup Women went from a potential all-Russian showdown to having no teams from the Superleague in the two games (April 2 and 9) that will decide the championship.

The Kursk players will be wondering what happened to their offense because they held a 31-28 advantage with 6:21 to go in the third quarter.

That meant they still enjoyed a 17-point lead on aggregate.

The wheels came off in spectacular fashion.

Algirdas Paulauskas' Kursk outfit scored just eight points for the rest of the game and they ended the contest with 23 turnovers.

Gala outscored the visitors 15-3 to close out the third period with Augustus, who captured her first Olympic gold medal last summer with Team USA, torching them for eight.

With 6:17 to go in the game, Augustus buried a jump shot to take her points haul to 30 and put Galatasaray in front at 51-36 and give them a one-point lead on aggregate.

She followed that with a pair of free throws and a lay-up to make it 55-36.

Kursk point guard Anastasia Fomina connected from behind the arc to cut the deficit to 55-39, but the Russian outfit failed to put any more points on the board.

Augustus, meanwhile, scored four of her team's last six points to put an exclamation point on her brilliant performance.

No other Galatasaray player reached double figures in scoring.

Sophia Young did contribute nine points and eight rebounds.

For ice-cold Kursk, Sandra Valuzyte, Anastasiya Bocharova and Irena Vizbariene each scored eight points.

Kursk were 11 of 32 inside the arc, five of 11 beyond it and just two of six at the free throw line.

Galatasaray overcame a one-of-11 effort from three-point land by making 27 of 51 shots from two-point range. They were also five of seven from the charity stripe.

Galatasaray, who are coached by Turkey women's national team boss Cem Akdag, will play the first leg away on April 2 and host the return leg on April 9.

 


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