Serbia Storm Back To Deny Bulgaria

21 July 2013

U20 MEN

9. Luka Mitrovic (Serbia)
Luka Mitrovic and Serbia turned around a game that seemed lost to edge Bulgaria for 13th place

Serbia outscored Bulgaria 29-9 in the final frame on Sunday to clinch a stunning 76-70 comeback victory and take 13th spot at the Sportland U20 European Championship.

The Serbians lost their three first games in the tournament and were condemned to stay outside the top-12, but finished on a high note since they went on a six-game winning streak after that to finish the highest possible.

On Sunday, they looked focused during the opening exchanges and led by as many as 11 points early but Bulgaria quickly got into the game and took the initiative -and their first lead - midway through the second quarter.

Methodically, Bulgaria started pulling away until widening the gap to a whopping 16 points, 63-47, on the first possession in the final frame.

Serbia were the only ones in the entire city of Tallinn that still did not think the game was done and dusted at that point, and they proved everyone wrong.

They owe a lot to Luka Mitrovic, who kick-started the amazing run with nine consecutive personal points, until Mihajlo Andric pulled them ahead, 71-70, with a three-pointer when there was 1:19 left on the clock, the shell-shocked Bulgarians unable to react or score again until the final buzzer.

Andric led all scorers with 23 points, while Mitrovic collected a double-double of 21 points and 11 rebounds.

For Bulgaria, Aleks Simeonov had 22 points and eight rebounds in a losing effort.

 


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