Croatia were given all they could handle for about 25 minutes before the EuroBasket 2015 Group C hosts pulled away to defeat The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 73-55.
Turning Point: The game had been tight until mid-way through the third quarter when Dario Saric started a 16-5 run over the final eight minutes of the quarter to take control of the game 52-42. Back-to-back three-pointers by Krunoslav Simon and Bojan Bogdanovic increased the gap to 59-46 with seven minutes left in the game to decide the contest.
Stats Don't Lie: Croatia struggled from outside, hitting 6-of-24 three-pointers (25%) but the home side scored 38 points in the paint compared to 20 for MKD. The Croatians also out-shot MKD 41% to 37% from the field and out-rebounded MKD 42-32.
Game Hero: Saric's all-around play led Croatia as he collected 15 points, seven rebounds, four assists, one steal, one block and five fouls drawn.
Bottom Line: Croatia bounced back from their loss to Greece and are now tied for second in Group C with Slovenia at 2-1. The Croatians still play Netherlands and Georgia in the group. MKD dropped to 1-2 in the Zagreb group with games remaining against Georgia and Slovenia.