|Emmeline Ndongue contributed 15 points and seven rebounds for Bourges |
Bourges wrapped up their first win of the EuroLeague Women season by leading from tip to buzzer in a 61-55 success against a short-handed Wisla Can-Pack in Group A.
With the visitors still without the services of WNBA MVP Tina Charles and also suffering from the loss of veteran Katie Douglas who is sidelined with an injury, Bourges were always favourites to edge this one.
And, with a number of French players buoyed by their Olympic silver medal success, there was a spring in the step of the home team who scored the first six points of the contest and that set the tone.
Playmaker Celine Dumerc was back directing traffic but unlike her mesmerising performances in London which were characterised by her willingness to score, this time she stayed creator and had five assists.
That wasn't surpising with the newly arrived Frida Eldebrink alongside her and impressively continuing where she left off during the summer for Sweden when she was the most prolific player of EuroBasket Women qualifying.
She scored 18 points as Bourges went in front early and kept Wisla at arms' length for the most part.
They built up a double-digit lead by early in the second quarter at 33-23 and whilst the visitors got within two points at 47-45 in the last period, Bourges always looked more likely to step it up in the closing stages and that is exactly how it panned out.
Cristina Ouvina had a creditable 10 points and five assists on her EuroLeague Women debut for the losing team.
Wisla head coach Jose Hernandez:
"I'm very proud of my team. We played against a very good team, with parts of the French national team. We had a good opportunity to win this game when we were within two points of Bourges, but we didn't manage to break the score."
Wisla player Justyna Zurowska:
"We missed our two American players but we made a good game. We are sure that next time it will be different."
Bourges head coach Valerie Garnier:
"The team of Krakow is very tall and I'm satisfied that we performed well at the rebound. But we still need more precision in our play and to improve our efficiency. This victory was important to start this championship and to keep improving."
Bourges player Frida Eldebrink:
"It was the first European game and it's good to start with a victory. It was difficult to find the good rhythm against a tall and good team of Krakow. This team will be even better with their two missing players. Personally, I feel good within this team of Bourges, it's quite different from my previous team."