Pieštanske Čajky challenged the top seeded Belarus champions Tsmoki Minsk and scored two three-pointers in the clutch time to end the first quarterfinal game in a 55-55 tie on Wednesday, January 23, at Diplomat Arena in Pieštany, Slovakia.
Players of the game
Ala Murauskaya and Danielle McCray (University of Kansas 2006-2010) combined for a 14 points in the final seven minutes to spark a 0-14 run for the visiting team.
Murauskaya scored 8-of-10 points in the fourth quarter, including a huge three-pointer with 03:29 left to give her team a 49-55 lead. She hit that three-pointer in her sixth attempt.
Danielle McCray was omnipresent. She had 19 points on 9-of-17 shooting from the field as well as nine rebounds, four assists and two steals for a game high efficiency rating of 23.
McCray scored six points midway the fourth quarter in a span of three minutes.
Viktoryia Hasper added 16 points, nine rebounds, four steals and two blocked shots, while Rachel Elise Theriot (Nebraska) posted five points, six assists and three steals.
Three Pieštanske Čajky players scored in double figures.
Rebeka Mikulasikova had 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field.
Jessica Lubin (Université du Québec à Montréal) posted 15 rebounds while Janee Thompson (University of Kentucky) added 12 points.
Pieštanske Čajky missed first seven shots and turned the ball over four or five times to find themselves in a 0-13 hole with 04:59 to go in the first quarter.
Janee Thompson scored the first basket for the hosts with 04:03 left.
The hosts took over and limited the Dragons offense until those fateful seven minutes in the fourth quarter.
Čajky outscored Tsmoki 49-26 during that stretch to build a double figure lead early in the final frame 49-39.
The hosts went scoreless again midway the fourth quarter while the Dragons went on a 0-16 run for six points advantage 49-55.
Dominika Deptova and Janee Thompson hit from the deep to tie the game at 55 points with 01:50 left.
The series will be decided on February 13 in Minsk.
Schedule (local time only)
(A1) Tsmoki Minsk – Pieštanske Čajky (B4)
January 23, game one: 55-55
Wednesday, February 13, Minsk, 17:00
(A2) A3 Basket – Žabiny Brno (B3)
Saturday, February 2, Brno, 18:00
Wednesday, February 13, Umea, 18:00
(B2) Lulea Basket – Rostov Don SFEDU (A3)
Sunday, February 10, Rostov Don, 17:00
Thursday, February 21, Lulea, 19:00
(B1) TTT Rīga – Olimpia Grodno (A4)
To be confirmed at a later date
Tsmoki Minsk/Pieštanske Čajky – Lulea Basket/Rostov Don SFEDU
A3 Basket/Žabiny Brno – TTT Rīga/Olimpia Grodno
Final Four history
Rīga 2016: TTT Rīga, Basket 90 Gdynia, Astana Tigers, Tsmoki Minsk
Košice 2017: Good Angels Košice, TTT Rīga, Dynamo Moscow, Basket 90 Gdynia
Rīga 2018: Good Angels Košice, TTT Rīga, Dynamo Moscow, Udominate Basket
The playoffs 2018
(A1) Good Angels 151-107 Pieštanske Čajky (B4)
(A2) Al Riyadi 123-144 Dynamo Moscow (B3)
(A3) Lulea Basket 172-173 Udominate (B2)
(A4) Liepājas Papīrs 108-179 TTT Rīga (B1)
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