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Lithuania Win Russia Rematch

27 July 2013
U18 MEN
4. Zydrunas Jurgutis (Lithuania)
Zydrunas Jurgutis sunk a clinical three for Lithuania with 41 seconds to play

Turning Point: Russia's role players tied up the game with three minutes remaining, but two botched free throws from Alexander Gavrilov that would have given them the lead enabled Ricardas Verbickas to put Lithuania in front for good with a driving basket plus the foul,
Game Hero: 17 points from Zydrunas Jurgutis and a three-point basket with 41 seconds remaining sealed the result for Lithuania.
Stats Don't Lie: Lithuania have routinely depended upon the three-point shot in this tournament, but scored 38 points in the paint to survive in a game where the outside shots were not falling.

Lithuania remain in the hunt for a 5th-placed finish at the U18 European Championship after defeating Russia 84-77 on Saturday.

Surpassing his tournament-high point production in the first quarter alone, 10 points from power forward Sergei Zhulkov trumped Lithuania's 71% shooting from the field as Russia built a five-point lead they would maintain for the better part of the next quarter-and-a-half.

The offensive production from backcourt partners Ricardas Verbickas and Zydrunas Jurgutis brought Lithuania within a point two minutes into the second, but All Tournament team contender Alexander Martynov caught fire scoring eight points over a three-minute stretch.

Both teams took some time to settle into the second half, but it was Lithuania, paced by a nine-point quarter from Domantas Sabonis, that made their charge to outscore the Russians by six and head into the final quarter only down by a point.

A Verbickas three gave Lithuania an early fourth quarter lead. He stood up again to knock down a game defining drive before Lithuania were able to close out the win from the free throw line.

Sabonis scored a Lithuanian team-high 19 points, but the backcourt production of Jurgutis (17 points, five rebounds) and Verbickas (15 points) proved just as valuable.

Martynov led Russia with 20 points and six assists and Zhulkov finished 16 points.

 

 

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