|Mutlu Akpinar (right) had 21 points for Gaziantep to assure their perferct Last 16 record remained intact|
Royal Hali Gaziantep completed a perfect run through Group K of the EuroChallenge with a 69-60 win over Dijon.
Mutlu Akpinar poured in 21 points while Ernest Bremer had 11 with 11 assists as Gaziantep moved to 6-0 at the top of the group.
They made hard work of it, allowing Dijon to take a 29-14 first-half lead, but they drew level with a 11-0 spurt early in the third period and then pulled clear.
Dijon began to build a lead late in the first quarter, scoring eight unanswered points to go 20-12 up, and then using nine straight to go 29-14 up a little under four minutes into the second period.
That seemed to stir something in Gaziantep, who replied with nine straight of their own, but they still trailed 32-26 at half-time.
Akpinar's three then sparked the run that brought them level in the third period, with Oliver Stevic tying it at 37.
Soon after, a three from Bremer put them on top and they led 50-44 by the end of the period.
Dijon got back within one at the start of the fourth, but Bremer and Akpinar replied with three-pointers that put Gaziantep back in the clear as they eased away to victory.
Terrance Campbell led Dijon with 20 points while Mykal Riley had 11.
JDA Dijon Head Coach Jean-Louis Borg
"Gaziantep finished the group in first place. We quit defending Gaziantep and totally fought each other. Their players did not play for themselves, they played for each other. Also, we have chemistry but we didn't show it today. We missed lots of free throws."
JDA Dijon Player Lens Aboudou
"It was a physical game. We knew we are out of the competition but we worked in the game because we have the target of earning the title in the French League. We missed lots of free throws and it might be one of the reasons that we lost the game. Gaziantep is a good team and congratulations for making the quarter finals."
Royal Hali Gaziantep Head Coach Jurij Zdovc
"Congratulations to my players. For sure we didn't start like we wanted. I wanted to give more minutes to some players who don't play usually. They deserved to play because they worked hard in practice and they maintain the atmosphere. I was worried that we started well but after that we lost our rhythm. Dijon is a really good team. They have size and athleticism."
Royal Hali Gaziantep Player Erden Eryuz
"First it was an interesting game because we had already achieved our Quarter Final spot and Dijon didn't have any target for this game. For us we didn't want to lose our rhythm and Coach was warning us about this. The first half they started well. For the second half we talked to each other and we fought .We want to make the Final Four and I hope we can do it."