Game Notes: Turkey vs. Serbia
SLAM’s reporter questions the final play of a tight game.
by John Hobbs / @johnswisshobbs
Ersan Ilyasova had only connected on three of his nine field-goal attempts and was struggling throughout the game. Serbia was up 68-67 with four seconds left on the clock and Turkey were in need of a hero.
Their EuroBasket lives were in danger, the ball was given to the Milwaukee Bucks forward and his fade away jumper hit the back-iron.
Game, set and match. Serbia qualifies for the quarterfinals in Kaunas with the win; Turkey is ousted.
Turkey’s participation at the 2011 EuroBasket has come to an end. But was the final play drawn up for a player that had helped his side get through the group stage in Panevezys to Vilnius?
“Well, we decide to have the shooters in the corner then we wanted [Ender] Arslan to pop Ilyasova back and if he wanted to he could shoot the ball,” Turkey coach Orhun Ene said after the game.
Turkey ran a basic corner play which was defended well by the Serbs. Ilyasova was fading back as he shot the ball. The Turks only had four seconds to run it. Something had to give.
Turkey didn’t shoot the ball very well—it has to be said. Hidayet Turkoglu and Ersan Ilyasova were a combined 6/20 from the field, and as a team, they had missed 13 free throws to finish 16/29 from the charity stripe.
Serbia was good money for their win. Milos Teodosic led all scorers comfortably with 20 points, but the win stemmed from better shooting from the foul line. Serbia was 13/16 from the stripe.
“Everybody was under pressure,” Serbia coach Dusan Ivkovic commented. “The winner is in the Quarter-Final. We played a very good first quarter; we controlled the game in the first half. Our concentration fell down in the second half but for sure, we led the game for 40 minutes.
“But unfortunately we allowed with four seconds to go for Turkey to have the last shot. We deserved this victory. We were better tonight.”