Last night in the quarterfinals Russia, Nigeria, Dominican Republic and Lithuania advanced to the semifinals by beating Angola, Greece, FYROM & Puerto Rico. Today Russia played against Nigeria and Lithuania faced off against the Dominican Republic for the chance to compete at the London Olympics. However, the two losing teams are still going to play against each other tomorrow for the third and final ticket to the Olympics.
In the first of two games, Russia defeated Nigeria 85-77. Alexey Shved scored 22 points, Andrei Kirilenko had 19 points & 8 rebounds. Russia won the first quarter 26-20, they had a bigger lead after the 2nd quarter, 46-31. Nigeria tried cutting the lead down, but they couldn't get over the hump. Nigeria seemed to play a little slow, perhaps they used a lot of their energy to beat tough opponents like Lithuania and Greece. Ike Diogu had 16 points and 14 boards in the loss.
In the 2nd game of the day, Lithuania defeated the Dominican Republic easily, 109-83. Jonas Maciulis scored 19 points, Raptors lottery pick from last year, Jonas Valanciunas, rebounded from his awful performance last night against Puerto Rico and went ___ from the field for 17 points and 9 boards & Linas Kleiza had 13.
Lithuania had a 21-16 lead after the first quarter and the game remained close until the third period, in which Lithuania got themselves a 20 point lead, 63-43 and the game went downhill for the Dominicans. Jack Michael Martinez had 13 points and 10 rebounds, Al Horford 12 and 10 & Juan Coronado did his part with 10 points for the Dominicans.
With the win, the Lithuanians are now headed to London to play in the Olympics (Same with Russia) , the Dominicans can join them tomorrow if they beat Nigeria for the third and final spot, if they do that, the Dominicans will be going to their first Olympics in their history.
Photo credit: Endi.com
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