Ekaterinburg End CSKA's Perfect Record


UMMC Ekaterinburg handed CSKA Moscow their first defeat of the season in any competition on Tuesday to take a 1-0 lead in their EuroLeague Women quarter-final.

Penny Taylor, the most valuable player of Australia's gold-medal winning side at the 2006 FIBA World Championship, scored 18 points to lead Ekaterinburg to an 81-74 triumph.

CSKA got their EuroBasket Women MVP from last year Amaya Valdemoro back from injury but her 17 points and nine rebounds weren't enough to keep the Moscow team's perfect season intact.

Ilona Korstin (CSKA Moscow)
Ilona Korstin and CSKA were frustrated by their Russian rivals

Ekaterinburg trailed by as many as seven points in the first half but fought back to twice lead by four.

Edwige Lawson-Wade, CSKA's France international playmaker, drilled a three-pointer in the final minute to give the hosts a 44-43 advantage at half-time.

On two occasions - after a three-point play by Lawson-Wade and later two made free throws by Valdemoro - CSKA went on top by six in the third quarter, but Laurent Buffard's Ekaterinburg dug in their heels and did not allow the home side to build a decisive lead.

Instead, trailing 60-55 after another Lawson-Wade jumper for CSKA gave Gundars Vetra's side a 60-55 advantage late in the third quarter, Ekaterinburg struck with a game-winning run.

Russia international Natalia Vodopyanova made a lay-up, and Deanna Nolan followed with a jump shot for her first two points of the game.

After Nicole Powell for CSKA and Nolan for Ekaterinburg missed three-ball attempts at the end of the third quarter, Nolan hit a three with less than nine minutes to go for a 62-60 lead.

Vodopyanova and Taylor followed with baskets and UMMC stayed in front the rest of the way.

CSKA Moscow have been the most potent side in all competitions this season due in large part to the play of their twin towers, Ann Wauters and Maria Stepanova.

Stepanova was just three of 11 from the floor and scored seven points while grabbing just five rebounds.

Wauters was five of 12 from the floor, but zero for three from behind the arc.

She did have 11 of CSKA's 39 rebounds, though that was an area dominated by Ekaterinburg as they grabbed 47.

Yelena Leuchanka and Asjha Jones each had 10 rebounds for Ekaterinburg.

France international Sandrine Gruda was also outstanding for Ekaterinburg by making seven of 10 shots on her way to 15 points.

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