|12 December 2013|
|Michelle Snow and Adana were too strong for Tsmoki|
The last remaining tickets for the Eighth Finals of EuroCup Women have been snapped up and none in more dramatic circumstances than the one punched by Norrkoping Dolphins.
The Swedish side needed to win against Mersin Buyuksehir to make it through and did so in spine-tingling fashion, by taking a thrilling 69-68 success thanks mainly to a stellar 28 point effort from Elisabeth Egnell.
The hosts had led by double-figures in the second-half, but looked to have snatched a defeat from the jaws of victory by losing their lead in crunch time - only to grab it back inside the last minute.
Courtney Paris racked up 22 points and 15 rebounds for Mersin and it wasn't all tears as they also advanced. Indeed there was also joy for Chevakata Vologda, who also progressed to the last sixteen as one of the best two third-placed teams.
There was also considerable drama played out in Group C, which had witnessed a three-way tie heading into the last night of first round action.
Dynamo Novosibirsk had looked best placed to advance with a road game at ACS Sepsi, but they were left distraught and dumped out of the competition after falling to an agonising 57-53 defeat.
In a roller-coaster ride, the Russian side looked like they would go on to win the game, but then hit a major offensive drought which proved fatal. They scored only four points during the last seven minutes of the game and paid the penalty.
Samantha Prahalis was the tormentor with 26 points for Sepsi, whilst Binta Drammeh replied with 19 points and eight rebounds for Novosibirsk.
It meant that Tarsus Belediye still progressed despite losing 78-72 at Horizont Minsk, who finished the opening phase in style by topping the group.
They built their success behind a 21 point display from Belarusian national team player Tatyana Troina and a scorching 29-15 second period. Donneka Hodges had 20 points and eight assists in defeat.
A stunning 27-10 final quarter by Villeneuve d'Ascq catapulted the French club to a 63-57 success at PEAC-Pecs and also to the summit of Group F.
Twin towers Olayinka Sanni and Emma Meesseman continued their excellent season by sharing 37 points, with Sanni also pulling down 10 rebounds.
Serbian wing Nevena Jovanovic had 15 points and six rebounds for the losing side and the despair initially felt on the final buzzer was later replaced by euphoria, after confirmation they had taken the very last available ticket as one of the two best third-placed clubs.
|Nadezhda Grishaeva dominated in the paint for Dynamo Moscow|
TSV Wasserburg went into their last game against Aluinvent Miskolc with a mountain to climb, not only needing to win, but requiring a 17 point margin.
They managed to achieve their first aim and went on to dig out a victory, but their 57-54 success wasn't sufficient to make it out of Group E. Emma Cannon had 14 points and 13 rebounds for the German club and Rebecca Tobin had 11 points and 15 rebounds for Miskolc who sealed their place.
Istanbul Universitesi rode into the eighth finals as Group D winners after Shenise Johnson and Crystal Langhorne combined for 39 points in an emphatic 95-73 success at Olimpia Grodno. Julie Seabrook harvested 15 points for the hosts who finished their schedule without any victories to their name.
Dynamo Moscow had to settle for runners-up and finished on a winning note with a commanding 87-62 success at domestic rivals Spartak Noginsk. And, it was a Russian duo who stood out as Tatiana Vidmer corralled 22 points and 10 rebounds, whilst frontcourt partner Nadezhda Grishaeva had 21 points and nine boards.
Finally in Group A, there were contrasting fortunes for Dynamo Kursk and Tsmoki Minsk. The former preserved their unbeaten record thanks to an 82-76 success at Homend Antakya as Seimone Augustus poured in 24 points.
Meanwhile Minsk failed in their final attempt to register a victory by falling 62-49 at home to Adana Botas, with Anna Vajda claiming 19 points for the visitors and Michelle Snow adding a fine double-double of 16 points and 17 rebounds.