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Rock Survive Against Lappeenranta

29.01.2008

Tartu University Rock saw off the determined challenge of Lappeenranta on Tuesday to finish top of the EuroCup Group A Qualifying Round.

Marek Doronin led the way with 21 points on a nine of nine shooting display inside the arc as Tartu prevailed 78-72.

Adrian Terrell Henning (Lappeenranta)
Adrian Henning led Lappeenranta with 20 points.
The victory leaves them 5-1, the same record as CSK-VVS Samara, but Tartu captured first place by virtue of a better goal differential in the games the two sides played against each other.

Lappeenranta had nothing but pride to play for with just one victory in the group.

Their fans back in Finland will know they have a very proud outfit indeed, then, as Lappeenranta  pushed Tartu to the limit.

Trailing 64-57 in the fourth quarter, the Finns launched a spirited fightback and twice tied the game in the closing stages.

Juha Sten's lay-up pulled Lappeenranta level at 69-69 with 1:07 to go, and after Gert Kullamäe drilled a three-pointer to put Tartu right back on top at 72-69, the visitors answered again.

This time, Ivan Harris stopped and popped from long range to make it 72-72.

Doronin was his side's offensive star of the game and his biggest basket probably came next, a lay-up with 28 seconds to go for a two-point edge.

Brian Cusworth followed with a big defensive play for Tartu, swatting another Sten lay-up attempt.

Tartu added a couple of more free throws, and a Doronin jumper at the death, for the six-point triumph.

Estonia international Kullamäe finished with 17 points in the victory.

Tartu dominated the boards, out-rebounding Lappeenranta 43-34.

The Finns also did their upset bid serious harm by converting just 11 of 19 at the free throw line, compared to Tartu's 11 of 14.

Adrian Henning, formerly of Austin Peay University, led the visitors with 20 points.

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