The Slovenia Times

Basketball: Slovenia Collapsed in Fourth Quarter Against Lithuania


It had been clear that it will be a hard-fought battle already before the game as the winner is set to avoid playing the reigning world champions United States at least until semi-finals.

Slovenia more or less exchanged baskets with the physical Lithuanian team in the first quarter, with neither ream managing to get a comfortable lead. The period ended with Slovenia leading 24:22.

Lithuania opened the second period with a 5:0 run, but Slovenia recovered and turned the score around after a three-pointer by Zoran Dragić (37:32). Slovenia kept with the good shooting from the perimeter to increase the lead by half-time (44:36).

Slovenia tightened up the defence in the third quarter, and were leading by 9 points in the 25th minute after a triple by Domen Lorbek (53:44). Lithuania called a time-out, but it did not help, as Slovenia increased the lead further to 60:48.

The end of the third quarter was dominated by Lithuanians, though, who managed to come closer at the end of the period (62:55) and kept pressing Slovenians in the last period to cut the lead even further.

Midway through the fourth quarter the EuroBasket runners-up were only two points away to make the match completely open and equalled the score four minutes to go at 62:62 while Slovenia struggled to score a single basket.

Lithuania scored on two more occasions to increase the lead to 4 points a minute to go, a lead that Slovenia were not able to catch.

Slovenia's top scorer Domen Lorbek (14) said that Slovenia failed to find a solution for Lithuania's aggressive defence, while missing a lot of open shots. "It's a shame. What happened is exactly what we feared".

Slovenia will have a day off before squaring off with Dominican Republic in the round of 16. If Slovenia win, they will most likely play against the US in the quarter-finals.


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