Turkey suffered a disastrous fourth quarter in their match-up to go down to Serbia & Montenegro at the ACI Trading Ltd U20 European Championship Men in Chekov.
After playing solid basketball for 30 minutes, most of which they led, the Turks self destructed in the final period, scoring just 2 points and granting their opponents what turned into an easy victory.
Turkey were unquestionably the better team over the course of the first three quarters.
The Turks grabbed the lead at the 6 minute mark in the game and would not relinquish it until the end of the third period.
But when Serbia & Montenegro came back, they did it in style.
Branislav's Ratkovica's buzzer beating lay-up proved the catalyst for a remarkable fourth quarter run. Serbia & Montenegro went on to outscore Turkey 20-0 in the first 7 minutes of the period, turning a previously close game into a rout.
Turkey's futility in the final 10 minutes was reflected in the statistics.
They turned the ball over 5 times and missed their opening 7 field goal attempts. In fact their only 2 points of the quarter came on free throws, and even then they made only 2/4 attempts.
Turkey will now meet Spain in the final group game on Sunday. The 2 sides met in the final of the 2004 U18 European Championship, of which current players Sergio Rodriguez (ESP) and Hakan Demirel (TUR) were selected to the All-Tournament Team.
This year, however, the contest will only decide which team will finish bottom of Group D.