Here at Bullets Forever, we have community members from all over the world. One of our Polish regulars, Bartek Biadasiewicz, checks in with us and recaps Team Poland's big win over Team Russia in Day 2 of EuroBasket 2015 group play. - the BF staff
On Sunday, Poland got a big 82-79 win over Russia in EuroBasket 2015 Group A play. The win puts them in a comfortable position before tomorrow's game against France. Russia, on the other hand is on the brink of elimination in the early stages of the tournament despite being one of the higher ranked teams in EuroBasket 2015. A video of the highlights is embedded above via FIBA's YouTube channel.
Here are some notes I took throughout the game by quarter to show you how it all went down.
It started really well for Poland. After two 3 pointers by Waczynski, Gortat's score and Mateusz Ponitka's dunk, Poland led 10 to 5. However, Russia quickly responded with an 8 to 2 run taking advantage some of the Polish team's concentration lapses.
Gortat was the primary option on the offensive end but with mixed results.
GORTAT WATCH: 10 minutes, 6 points (3-7 shooting), 1 rebound, 1 assist
Score after the quarter: Russia, led Poland, 22-19
Luckily for Poland, Adam Waczynski who plays for Spanish team Rio Natura continued his great shooting form with another two three-pointers, a successful lay-up and some free throws. He completed his tremendous performance with 15 points at the halftime and never missed a shot.
Gortat sat for most of this quarter with Przemyslaw Karnowski (Gonzaga) filling in. When he clocked in with 3:25 minutes left was unable to make much of an impact.
GORTAT WATCH: Marcin just added 1 blocked shot to his stats line in this period.
Score at halftime: Poland led Russia, 42-40
- Poland shot 7 of 14 from the three point line
- Russia out-rebounded Poland 20 to 14
Gortat started on a high note with a quick score and assist in the space of 45 seconds. Poland got much better with their defense forcing Russia to turnovers and missed shots. And then with 3:48 left on the clock Ponitka took his game to another level.
Within a minute, he exploded by making two incredible dunks when he took the ball from the three point line to the basket each time outplaying and outrunning two or three defenders in the process. To make this period even more exciting for the Polish fans, Gortat seconded with a big HAMMER after PnR with Ponitka (56 second mark of the video)!
GORTAT WATCH: 13 points (6-11 shooting), 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block
Score after 3: Poland led 60 to 56
Waczynski (finally) missed not one but two shots in a row, but Poland stayed in control. Karnowski made 2 consecutive baby hooks keeping Poland ahead.
With five minutes left Poland was up by 6points (70-64). They increased their lead to 8pts with 3 and half minutes left. In the meantime, Russia went over the foul limit sending Gortat, Waczynski and Gortat again to the free throw line (5 out of 6 FT made).
The last 10 seconds were a bit close for comfort for me. First, Russia's Vitaly Fridzon missed a three but Poland allowed Russia to grab an offensive rebound. On the next possession, Dmitry Grigoryevich Khvostov made a clutch 3 point shot and Gortat badly fouled Fridzon during the action! Two free throws given to Russia! With six seconds left, it's a one possession game!
After, Waczynski made one of his free throws, Poland fouled Khvostov, who missed BOTH of his free throws and Semyon Antonov missed a crazy last second attempt! Victory at last!
GORTAT WATCH: 18 points (6-11 shooting, 6-7 with free throws), 6 rebounds, 3 assists. 1 block in 30 minutes
This game proved again how valuable Gortat, Ponitka and Waczynski are to Poland. If they play like that again tomorrow they will have more than a fighting chance against a French squad that is laden with multiple NBA players.