July 7, 2013
PRAGUE, Czech Republic - Australia and Lithuania battled in a back-and-forth affair Sunday, that needed overtime to determine third place at the FIBA U19 World Championship. Lithuania prevailed 106-100. Boise State incoming freshman Nicholas Duncan tallied seven points and six rebounds in 24 minutes before fouling out at the end of regulation.
Australia had possession with 29 seconds to play in the fourth quarter of a tie game. As the ball handler came off a high screen he slipped and Lithuania committed a foul in an effort to make the steal. That sent the Emus to the line for two shots with nine seconds remaining. After a make, the second free throw rimmed out and Duncan appeared to have put Australia up three with a putback. However, he was called for a foul on the rebound. The future Bronco's fifth personal sent him to the bench and Lithuania to the charity stripe for a chance to take the lead. Lithuania split the trip and the game remained tied through the fourth-quarter horn.
With Duncan on the sideline Australia traded points at the outset of the five-minute extra period. Then a deep three from Lithuania halfway through put the Emus down by six. The Europeans extended their lead to 10 with a minute left on the clock, but Australia kept fighting. Five points in 13 seconds made the score 102-97, free throws sealed the game for Lithuania and provided the final margin.
Lithuania, the silver medalists from the 2012 U18 European Championship, controlled the first half. It took a three-point lead at the end of the first quarter, before starting the second on a 17-3 run for a 17-point advantage. Australia found its groove in the final 3:30 of the half, using a Duncan basket in the paint to start an 11-2 spurt and close the gap to eight at halftime, 42-34.
The momentum carried over to the third quarter. Lithuania scored the first three points of the period and had its lead back to double figures. But the Emus put together a 20-1 run and built an eight-point lead. By the time Australia had taken control, Duncan was relegated to the bench with his third foul. Forced to sit the final six minutes of the quarter, he came back in the fourth with Australia holding a 62-56 lead.
Duncan quickly shook off the rust with a three-pointer from the right wing on Australia's first possession, making it a nine-point margin. A minute later Lithuania caught fire, scoring on six of is next seven possessions, including four three-pointers, to tie the game at 72.
The teams traded leads for the next four minutes until, with 53 seconds left, Australia knotted the score at 84. The Emus forced a miss on the defensive end to set up nail-biting end to regulation.
For the second game in a row Australia left points at the free throw line. The Emus shot 11-of-22 from the line against Lithuania, which went 28-of-42.
Hadziomerovic, Emerging Boomers Start World University Games with Win
Boise State rising junior Igor Hadziomerovic helped the Australia Emerging Boomers to an 85-57 win against the Czech Republic on the first day of competition at the World University Games in Kazan, Russia.
Hadziomerovic scored two points, dished out three assists, grabbed a rebound and a steal in 14 minutes of action.
Australia will continue Group C action Monday, against Sweden. The game is slated to tip off at 2:30