|New signing Torey Thomas delivered a remarkable all-round performance for Cholet, collecting 22 points, six rebounds and four assists|
Cholet Basket prevailed in an exciting back-and-forth battle at home over Grissin Bon Reggio Emilia, winning 81-78 in the EuroChallenge Last 16 Group J encounter.
Torey Thomas scored 22 points while Lamayn Wilson and John Cox both had 13 points and Claude Marquis added 11 for the winners, who improved to 1-1 in the group.
James White tallied a game-high 27 points and Rimantas Kaukenas had 18 and Andrea Cinciarini chipped in 11 points in the loss, which dropped the Italians to 1-1.
Reggio Emilia held the lead for a majority of the first quarter, including a 13-6 advantage, but it was Cholet who led 22-21 after 10 minutes.
The Italian side scored the first six points of the second quarter, followed by a 9-0 Cholet surge only to see the guests hit the next eight points and lead at the break 37-36.
Cholet used a 10-3 run to start the second half and open a 46-40 lead but Reggio Emilia scored the next seven points.
The game remained tight the rest of the quarter and Cholet were up 61-57 after 30 minutes.
The hosts built a 66-59 lead but Kaukenas brought Reggio Emilia back and they led 72-71.
The Cholet cushion was 78-73 when Kaukenas drained a three-ball but Rudy Jomby nailed a triple with 13 seconds to seal the win.
Cholet Head Coach Laurent Buffard
"I'm very happy about the victory because it is a collective one. The players had a very good spirit and attitude during the game. Of course I'm very happy about our new player Torey Thomas. He made the team dynamic and has brought a high rhythm to the team. I insist on one main thing: all players were involved in this victory."
Cholet Player Torey Thomas
"I feel great. My first impression is very good. We have approached the game collectively and there is a really good team game. I appreciated having responsibilities during my first game."
Reggio Emilia Head Coach Massimiliano Menetti
"Cholet played very well and the new player Torey Thomas changed the game. Congratulations to Torey Thomas. During the third quarter we did not take the opportunity to take the advantage and we missed some easy points."
Reggio Emilia Player James White
"It was a great game. The players of Cholet played very well and they played hard. Moreover we missed some easy points."