Riga Ghetto and Sakiai Gulbele impress on Day 1 of FIBA 3x3 World Tour Utsunomiya Final 2019

2 Nov 2019

UTSUNOMIYA (Japan) - Riga Ghetto (LAT), Princeton (USA) and Sakiai Gulbele (LTU) were the only undefeated teams on Day 1 at the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Utsunomiya Final 2019 on November 2.

The Latvians proved why they are the #1 team in the world right now with two impressive wins over Edmonton (21-18) and Amsterdam (21-13) in another MVP performance from Nauris Miezis, with 15 points and 6 key assists. Arturs Strelnieks contributed a team-high 16 points. In a win-or-go-home game, Amsterdam (NED) knocked out Nanjing Masters winners Edmonton (CAN) in a 21-19 last-minute thriller.

Kareem Maddox led all scorers with 19 points and Princeton ruled Pool B while 3-time World Tour winners Novi Sad (SRB) had a forgettable day. After a tough 19-10 loss against Princeton, the Serbian powerhouse were pushed to overtime against countrymen Zemun in a rematch of the championship game of the Beijing Final 2017. Novi Sad finally won (19-17) but were at the mercy of a Zemun win vs. Princeton and a 3-way tie since they were limited to 10 points in their first game. Zemun led the majority of the game but cracked in money time (16-20).

Montreal Masters winners Sakiai Gulbelé were the third undefeated team after pool play. The Lithuanians caught fire and started the day defeating Lausanne Masters winners NY Harlem (21-17) thanks to Aurelijus Pukelis, who dominated inside the arc with 8 points and 8 rebounds. Then, Sakiai Gulbelè took care of Jeddah (KSA) 21-15. Montreal Masters MVP Marijus Uzupis scored a game-high 10 points in an impressive performance. NY Harlem (USA) advanced to the quarter-finals after their win over Jeddah (KSA) in the last game of the day.

Last, but not least, Pool C saw Debrecen Masters winners Liman (SRB) and Piran (SLO) advancing to the quarter-finals thanks to their victories over Lausanne TNV (SUI) . Piran took first place after beating Liman in overtime.

QUARTER-FINALS

Riga Ghetto (LAT) vs Liman (SRB)
Sakiai Gulbelè (LTU)vs Novi Sad (SRB)
Princeton (USA) vs NY Harlem (USA)
Piran (SLO) vs Amsterdam (NED)