Donatas Motiejūnas has guided his nation back into FIBA World Cup contention in the aftermath of a shock loss to Australia, claiming a dominant 79:49 victory over South Korea.
Donatas Motiejūnas
© DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

However South Korea looked every chance to win its first tournament match since 1994, claiming a 19:14 lead late in the opening term.

Veteran Kim Joo-Sung proved to be impressive, scoring eight of his 12 points.

For a second consecutive afternoon at the Gran Canaria arena coach Jonas Kazlauskas would voice his frustration; inspiring Martynas Pocius and Motiejūnas trim the Korean defence lead.

Adas Juškevičius stunned the crowd by pouring two straight three point shots before his accuracy was matched by Jonas Valančiūnas and Šarūnas Vasiliauskas.

Entering the second half with a 10-point lead, Lithuania would limit the Asian nation to four points in the third quarter such was the dominance of Motiejūnas who would finish the game with six defensive rebounds.

He would combine for 11 with fellow NBA star Valančiūnas who would register an impressive slam dunk ten seconds into the final quarter.

Finally, to the astonishment of all those who had doubted his selection in the team, Juškevičius was able to land two more shots in the final seconds; ending the night with 20 points

Juškevičius would also finish with having scored six of seven attempted three point shots with an accuracy of 85.7%.

The 25-year-old, who was a late inclusion to the side for Mantas Kalnietis, would later find out he was one off the record of seven set by Šarūnas Jasikevičius and Arvydas Macijauskas in the 2004 Olympic tournament in Athens.

“They (South Korea) played a two on two defence, trying to restrict our targets from travelling to the ring head on,” said Juškevičius.

“This would leave one of us free on the three-point line so we made the most of that advantage.”

Lithuania has now qualified for the knock-out stage and will now play off against Slovenia in the final group match, a battle of the last two host nation’s of the EuroBasket tournament.

The respective European nation captured its fourth straight win in the World Cup, a come from behind 93:87 win over Angola thanks to the late efforts of Jaka Klobučar.

Australia also secured its spot in the knockout stage.

The absence of Spanish league star Chris Goulding would not affect the Boomers, accounting for Mexico 70:62.

Lithuania, Slovenia and Australia will all battle off for the top spot over the next twenty for hours while the eventual fourth placed nation in the group (Mexico, Angola and or even South Korea if they can gain a healthy percentage) will be forced to play the USA in the Round of 16.

Lithuania’s Stats:

Most points:

Adas Juškevičius (20), Donatas Motiejūnas (18), Jonas Valančiūnas (12).

Most rebounds:

Jonas Valančiūnas (8), Donatas Motiejūnas (7).

Most assists:

Donatas Motiejūnas (5), Šarūnas Vasiliauskas (3).

Team Comparisons:

Biggest lead:

Lithuania 30
South Korea 5

3 points FG:

Lithuania 42.5%
South Korea 23.5%

2 points FG:

Lithuania 51 %
South Korea 45.2%

Free Throws:

Lithuania (No free throws)
South Korea 90%

Blocks:

Lithuania 3
South Korea 5

Turnovers:

Lithuania 12
South Korea 18

Steals:

Lithuania 6
South Korea 1

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