Fenerbahce have topped Group A of the Euroleague Women Final Eight after they survived a last gasp onslaught by Sparta&K M.R. Vidnoje to win 58-57.
The Turkish side finish 3-0 and send a brave Sparta team packing, but they so very nearly lost it all together. Nika Baric had the chance to win it for Sparta with five seconds remaining, but instead opted to pass the ball instead of go for glory. It led to a turnover and Fenerbahce saw out the last seconds.
Cappie Pondexter led Fenerbahce with 16 points. Angel McCoughtry added 13. Evgenia Belyakova and Sonja Petrovic led Sparta with 14.
Galatasaray are also through to the semi-finals from Group A after they ousted Kayseri Kaski Spor 58-56 in another gripping encounter. Kayseri finishes the Final Eight with a 0-3 record.
Kayseri though made an electrifying start, leading 20-13 after the first period. Unfortunately for them, it went down from there. Galatasaray regrouped in the second quarter and held their counterparts to 6 points to take control. There were nervy moments at the end, but Sancho Lyttle helped the Istanbul side through as they celebrated a semi-final place.
Kelsey Bone led Galatasaray with 21 points, while Lara Sanders hit 16 points for Kayseri.
UMMC Ekaterinburg were tested by an unfazed USK Prague side, but came through to win 71-56 to finish 3-0 in Group B.
The sheer height and finishing under the basket was UMMC’s strength in this win. They trailed the Czechs 16-13 after the first quarter and then 22-15 in the early stages of the second period but they stormed back to lead 36-27 at the break and the hosts never looked back.
Diana Tuarasi led Ekaterinburg with 18 points with fellow American team-mate Candace Parker hitting a double-double of 16 points and 14 rebounds.
Tango Bourges got the nine-point victory they needed to advance as they beat Nadezhda Orenburg 65-52 as the French side advance to the semi-finals.
Tied at 35-35, Bourges went on a game-changing 11-3 burst in the third to seal the game as Catherine Joens led the victors with 14 points, as Bourges were forced to play without Great Britain international Johannah Leedham.
Orenburg bow out as their poor shooting from behind the arc was a low point for them. They hit a mere two triples from 12 attempts in the loss.
Euroleague Women Final Eight semi-final line-up:
Galatasaray vs UMMC Ekaterinburg
Fenerbahce vs Tango Bourges