A Maria Stepanova-inspired CSKA Moscow claimed an 86-72 win over Phard Napoli in Group A of the FIBA EuroLeague qualifying round on Thursday.
Phard started well and briefly held a 14-12 lead in the first quarter thanks to guard Kedra Holland-Corn who weighed in with some early points.
|Maria Stepanova led the way for CSKA with 28 points.|
But CSKA quickly aserted their authority which has seen them labelled as the team to beat in this year's competition.
Belgium's Ann Wauters and Russia's Stepanova both started to find their feet on the court and helped put CSKA 22-16 up by the end of the first period.
Phard battled bravely and were only 77-72 down with less than a minute to play.
But an Ilona Korstin three-pointer followed by a basket from Edwige Lawson-Wade and two more from Korstin ensured a flattering scoreline.
Stepanova would finish the game with 28 points and four revounds while Wauters had eight boards to go with her 21 points.
Korstin also poured in 21 points with four rebounds while Olga Arteshina contributed 12 points.
Heroic in defeat for Phard with 25 points and five rebounds was Holland-Corn.