Spain back in the Final after overcoming Schroder, soldout home crowd
BERLIN (Germany) - Spain will contest their fourth FIBA EuroBasket Final in the last six editions after beating Germany 96-91 in front of a soldout crowd of 14,073 in Berlin.
The three-time tournament winners overcame yet another double-digit deficit as they defied a game-high of 30 points from Dennis Schroder to set up a showdown with France on Sunday.
Turning Point: Rudy Fernandez connected with back-to-back triples to put Spain nine points ahead at 33-24, but Germany soon went on a 14-0 run in just 1:19 of action. Spain fought back to take the lead in the third but another run of 14 unanswered points from Germany established a double-digit cushion. However, Spain went on a pivotal 13-0 run in the fourth to move six points ahead and they managed to hold their nerve down the stretch.
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TCL Player of the Game: Lorenzo Brown missed his opening shot from the field before making seven straight attempts on the way to an impressive 29 points on 65 percent shooting, whilst adding 6 assists.
Alberto Diaz was +25 on the court in just 16 minutes of action off the bench.
Stats Don't Lie: Spain gave up nine turnovers in the first half alone having entered the contest averaging 8.6 per game, but they had just four in the second half and continued to make the most of their opportunities with 70 percent shooting inside the arc. They also made all of their free throw attempts; finishing 14 of 14.
Bottom Line: Spain will meet France in a repeat of their 2011 title-winning triumph. There was no quit from the team as they battled back from another double-digit deficit and had several players step up on the biggest of stages. Heartbreak for Germany, who had been so impressive once again. There remains a final shot at a medal as they will face Poland on Sunday in the Third Place Game.
"The energy was amazing out there. Schroder came out playing unbelievable. It took a lot of guts our end. I have to give a special, special shoutout to Alberto [Diaz] - he came through and played some great defense and allowed us to get the win." - Lorenzo Brown, Spain
"First of all, I have to congratulate Team Germany - they have been an amazing team. Their crowd was creating a great atmosphere inside the arena. I cannot find the words to congratulate my players. Really above any expectations. The most satisfactory medal. Built on hard work, togetherness, team basketball, the desire to overcome our limits and big guts in the fourth quarter once again. We came back and kept trusting ourselves." - Spain coach Sergio Scariolo
"It was a hard fought game. In the last quarter, we made some small mistakes on defense and this was difficult for us. We want to recover from today and look to the podium game and that's what will be important for us." - Andreas Obst, Germany
"Congratulations to Spain. We lost momentum early in the fourth quarter. They got some easy baskets and we missed a couple of easy ones. Give them credit. Thought the turning point was the end of the third and we had a tough five, six minutes. We had a great tournament up until now and obviously we are disappointed." - Germany coach Gordie Herbert