EuroBasket 2013: Lithuania beat Croatia, progress to Finals

Mar 29, 2013; Auburn Hills, MI, USA; Toronto Raptors small forward Linas Kleiza (11) before the game against the Detroit Pistons at The Palace. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

After being Italy on Thursday, Lithuania took on Croatia in the semi-finals of EuroBasket 2013. Friday evening the Lithuanians took care of business and will take on the winner of France-Spain in the finals of the tournament.

The game was a true nailbiter in the first half. Linas Kleiza carried the load for Lithuania early and often, finishing the first quarter with 12 points and five rebounds. Lithuania went into the half-time break with a 40-37 lead but it certainly didn’t feel like the game would get out of hand.

Lithuania got off to a great start in the third quarter and leaned on their consistent defense to frustrate Croatia and won the third period 21-8. Lithuania finished the game off solid and won with the final score of 77-62.

Kleiza slowed down after a terrific first half but still finished with 22 points and 11 huge rebounds for his country. Jonas Maciulis and Mantas Kalnietis added 23 and 18 points each.

As for the NBA players, Donatas Motiejunas never really got a chance to contribute much offensively, missing two shots in 10 minutes of play and grabbind three rebounds. Jonas Valanciunas, however, rebounded after a frustrating game against Italy. The Toronto Raptors center contributed with six points, five rebounds and blocked five shots.


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