Serbia Third, Greece Pray For Miracle

15 August 2012

U18 MEN

12. Nikola Jankovic (Serbia)
Nikola Jankovic came up with a 20-point, 14-rebound double-double to lead Serbia past Greece and into the Quarter-Finals

By Jared Grellet

A clinical final five minutes helped Serbia hold on to defeat Greece 64-59 on Wednesday, clinching third spot in Group E and a place in the Quarter-Finals of the Samsung U18 European Championship.

Following a horror start in which they managed just two points in the first seven minutes, Greece's chances of victory appeared slim, even more so with the absence of their most impressive player in Vilnius to date, Alexandros Mitsialos.

Yet despite their poor start and a 10-point deficit at half-time, Greece played with far more desperation in the third quarter, knowing their trip to the quarter-finals hanged in the balance.

Going three-for-eight from downtown in the frame, Greece went into the final quarter with an unexpected two-point lead.

But when Luka Andusic hit his second of two three-pointers in just over a minute midway through the final frame, Serbia were back in the box seat and up by five going into the last three minutes.

Andusic finished with 17 points, three less than Nikola Jankovic who had a 20-point, 14-rebound double-double.

Michail Kamperidis led Greek scoring with 17 points off the bench.

The loss now leaves Greece spending the rest of Wednesday sitting nervously and hoping for a Ukraine win over Italy by exactly five points of difference in the final group game.


 


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