France books EuroBasket semis spot with overtime win against Italy

France mounted a late rally to beat Italy 93-85 in overtime on Wednesday and book a spot in the FIBA EuroBasket 2022 semifinals.


Leading 77-75 with just 16 seconds to the final buzzer, Italy looked set for victory when forward Simone Fontecchio was fouled by Evan Fournier.


Fontecchio, though, missed both free throws to keep France in the game, with Thomas Heurtel duly capitalizing with a driving layup to tie the score at 77-77.


France made the most of their lifeline, scoring 16 points to Italy’s eight in overtime at Berlin’s Mercedes-Benz Arena.


They were up 89-85 when Italian forward Luigi Datome fouled Terry Tarpey with 31 seconds remaining.


Tarpey made no mistake, scoring both free throws to increase the lead to six points.


Italy’s frantic efforts for a three-pointer only led to a missed shot from Fontecchio, before Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot sealed France’s win with a slam dunk assisted by Heurtel.


Heurtel was France’s best performer with 20 points and eight assists.


Center Rudy Gobert had a double-double of 19 points and 14 rebounds, and shooting guard Evan Fournier added 17 points.


Italian pair Fontecchio and Marco Spissu scored 21 each, while Datome chipped in with 12 points.


France will find out their next opponent later on Wednesday after the quarterfinal clash between defending champions Slovenia and Poland.


Source: Anadolu Agency