22 September, 2021
07 April, 2022
6 Kayla Bonica Thornton (REYER)
Game Report
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Umana Reyer complete exciting comeback to make their third Final

BOURGES (France) - Umana Reyer are celebrating making their third EuroCup Women Final after completing an absorbing 85-80 comeback win against CBK Mersin Yenisehir Bld in the Semi-Finals at the Final Four in Bourges.

In what was a pulsating context and super advert for the competition and the women's game, Reyer showed the guts to not only make up for a nightmare start, but to also hold their nerve down the stretch.


Turning point: While this exciting game had so many different twists and turns, including the decisive triple from Astou Ndour down the stretch, Reyer would not have even been in that position if it was not for their second quarter recovery. Trailing by as many as 16 points, they had to wake up and get out of first gear. They finally found a higher gear with five minutes remaining until halftime, posting a spectacular 19-4 revival run to tie the game up and wipe out their awful first 15 minutes.

Game hero(es): As usual, the Italians were led by the one-two punch of Yvonne Anderson and Kayla Thornton. The former was on fire again and had 25 points and 9 assists, while Thornton fired 24 points including some big threes. There was also an important cameo from Ndour who didn't shoot the ball well for the most part but, when it mattered most, she made a big shot in crunch time, as well as showing composure with the vital free-throws. Meanwhile Sara Madera was aa unsung hero with an all-action 9 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists. 

Stats Don't Lie: Reyer took better care of the ball and showed more control - by far. Despite the high pressure of this game, they only spilled it 10 times, while it was almost double that for Mersin. Meanwhile the Italian side did an awesome job keeping Mersin off the offensive glass and holding them to just 5 boards on that end of the floor.

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Bottom line: Mersin were tipped by most people to push on and win the title because of their immense depth and array of stellar names. They could not have started better as they built up that commanding 16-point lead, but maybe they suffered from not having the right players and the right lineup on court at the right time. They blew it and will be kicking themselves that they allowed such a position of strength to evaporate.

Meanwhile Reyer were immense in terms of their patience and mental strength to shrug off what could have been a catastrophic start - led by the outstanding play of Anderson. Having dumped out holders Valencia and now a frontrunner in Mersin, the Venice club are just one win away from a first ever title.