|Chris Owens had 12 points in Team TEHO Sport Kotka's Tuesday night road win|
Team TEHO Sport Kotka delivered a sublime finish and overturned an 18-point deficit on Tuesday to clinch a 76-72 triumph at GasTerra Flames Groningen in EuroChallenge Group E action.
Groningen did almost everything right for 30 minutes and seemed all but certain to secure their first victory in this campaign when Jason Dourisseau converted an "and-1" play to give them a 62-44 lead with 1:48 left in the third quarter.
Ryan Ayers however thought otherwise and sunk a triple at the start of the fourth quarter to spark a 14-2 Kotka run which enabled the Finnish side to reduce the gap to 69-63 with 4:06 still left to play.
Jeffrey Robinson scored for the shell-shocked Dutch to make it 71-63 but Kotka's firm reply came immediately as Jukka Matinen, Sharaud Curry and Joonas Lehtoranta scored from beyond the three-point arc in quick succession to give their team the lead, 72-71 with 2:03 left on the clock.
Dourisseau missed two free throws and the chance to tie the scores at 74 eight seconds from the final buzzer, and when Ayers was fouled on the other end he kept his calm and sunk both shots from the charity stripe to seal victory for the visitors.
Ayers paved the way for Kotka with his 24 points and six rebounds, Chris Owens added 12 points and Curry finished with 10 points, five rebounds and a game-high nine assists.
Cashmere Wright had 15 points, four rebounds and four assists while Robinson finished with 10 points and nine rebounds for Groningen in defeat.
GasTerra Flames Head Coach Ivica Skelin
"In the last quarter we forgot to play basketball, forgot our team concept and started panicking. You cannot win if you don't play for four quarters. This game can work out very good for us if we learn our lesson."
Team TEHO Sport Head Coach Sami Toivianen
"I don't actually know why we won. They stopped their defence in the final quarter and we made two big three point shots in a row. The home team defence was so good for three quarters that we had to take a lot of three point shots."
GasTerra Flames player Craig Osaikhwuwuomwan
"We played good for three quarters. We played very strong defence, we thought we were there already and lost control."
Team TEHO Sport player Ryan Ayers
"This was a game between really good teams. We were trying to match up to their intensity. In the last quarter we picked up our energy level and we got momentum."