Marco Belinelli went 7-of-8 from downtown in the second half to propel Italy to a famous 105-98 win over Spain in a highly entertaining game which concluded Tuesday action in EuroBasket 2015 Group B.
Turning Point: After Spain reached their biggest lead of the night, 47-42 with 9:35 remaining to the end of the third buzzer, Belinelli decided to go target shooting. He instigated a blistering 15-0 run which lasted three minutes and lifted Italy to a 57-47 lead. The veteran guard had 11 points including three triples in quick succession in that spurt.
Stats Don't Lie: Italy had shot a poor 3-of-12 from beyond the three-point arc in the fist half but went 5-of-7 in the third quarter and 3-of-5 in the fourth. They also protected the ball incredibly well throughout the encounter, as they only committed three turnovers.
Game Hero: Belinelli, who had missed the only triple he attempted in the first half, reminded everybody in Berlin and the millions watching from home that he is none other the 2014 NBA Three-Point contest winner and finished with 27 points on 7-for-9 from three and seven assists. Danilo Gallinari and Andrea Bargnani were also superb for the winners.
Bottom Line: Italy have recovered from their opening night loss to Turkey in excellent fashion and are now tied with Turkey in second place in Group B, on a 2-1 record. Spain have dropped to 1-2 and are joint fourth with Germany.
They Said: "It's not the first time anyone has seen Marco get the hot hand like this, actually you all know there have been several. I remember once he dropped 36 against us at our home - and I was the one marking him" - Danilo Gallinari