Slovenia Comeback Beats Israel For Fifth // 15 July 2007

Israel blew a 20-point lead over the final 16 minutes and allowed co-hosts Slovenia to claim fifth place at the U20 European Championship Men with a 90-81 victory.

Matej Krusic scored 16 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead six Slovenians in double figures with Emir Preldzic also scoring 16 points and Rok Perko chipping in 14 off the bench.

Slovenia trailed 28-17 after one period and 48-34 at half-time.

Two foul shots by Omri Casspi, who led all scorers with 25 points, gave Israel a 60-40 lead with 5:53 to play in the third.

The Israeli advantage was still 16 points - 67-51 - after Casspi's lay-up with 1:49 in the third.

Up 67-55 going into the fourth, Israel's lead had dwindled to 74-68 with six minutes left. And it was even at 78-78 with 3:13 to go before Slovenia closed the game on a 12-3 run.

All told, Slovenia out-scored the Israelis 50-21 over the final 16 minutes.

Turkey, meanwhile, finished their U20 European Championship Men with a 97-88 victory over Bulgaria to take home seventh place.

The silver medallists from last summer were led by 18 points from Oguz Savas and 17 from Mutlu Demir.

Turkey used their interior presence to dominate the paint with 39 rebounds compared to 25 from Bulgaria.

The Bulgarians, who were ninth in 2006 in Izmir, were paced by 26 points from Chavdar Kostov and 21 from Nikolay Kolev.

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