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''VEF Riga'' squander excellent opportunity to qualify for ULEB Eurocup quarterfinals

Photo: LETA.
RIGA, Feb 13 - On Tuesday, Latvian basketball club ''VEF Riga'' squandered an excellent opportunity to qualify for the ULEB Eurocup's quarterfinals by losing in overtime to Spanish basketball club ''Valencia Basket'' 96:103.

The Latvian club was not able to pull out a win even though it had a 22 point lead at one point.

With the loss, ''VEF Riga's'' fate in this season's Eurocup will be determined in next week's road game at Spanish basketball club Bilbao ''Uxue''. The winner will qualify for the quarterfinals.

The highest scorer for the Latvian club was Earl Rowland with 29 points, however, he made three critical turnovers late in the game to allow ''Valencia Basket'' to tie and send the game into overtime. Kristaps Janicenoks added 14 points for ''VEF Riga''.

The highest scorer for ''Valencia Basket'' was Justin Doellman with 23 points.

As reported, "VEF Riga" is in Group J in the tournament's second group stage together with Spanish basketball club "Valencia" and Bilbao "Uxue", as well as Czech basketball club Nymburk CEZ.

''VEF Riga'' is currently in a three-way tie for first place in the group with Bilbao and Valencia, all having three wins and two losses.

The first and second place finishers of the four "Top 16" groups will qualify for the tournament's quarterfinals.

''VEF Riga'' finished in second place in its group in the tournament's first group stage, thus advancing to the ''Top 16''.
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