Russia became the 14th country ticketed to EuroBasket 2017 when it clinched first or second place in its qualifying group with a 67-78 road win over Bosnia and Herzegovina on Saturday. Down 39-31 at halftime, Russia surged behind two-time Turkish Airlines EuroLeague champion Andrey Vorontsevich of CSKA Moscow to win going away and raise its record to 3-0, good enough for a spot in next summer's continental championships because its Group C is the only one with just three teams. Vorontsevich made 4 of 7 three-pointers on his way to 16 points, one fewer than teammate Timofey Mosgov. Sergey Karasev of Zenit St. Petersburg added 15 more.
Russia joins next year's four hosts – Finland, Israel, Romania and Turkey – and nine teams who had reached EuroBasket 2017 through the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments and/or Rio Olympics: Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Serbia, Spain and Turkey. The 10 remaining teams will be determined through the the last two qualifying games next week.
Among other Saturday action, in Group A, Belgium moved within a win of qualification after defeating host Cyprus 72-55. After back-to-back three-pointers by Jonathan Tabu of Dominion Bilbao Basket broke an early 7-7 tie, Belgium used decide matters quickly with a a 21-42 first half. Tabu finished with 10 points for the winners. In the same group, Switzerland surprised Iceland with an 83-80 win, its first. Group B now sees the Netherlands on top after it beat host Austria 61-75 to go 3-1, while Denmark needed three overtimes to shock Germany 106-102 despite 26 points from Danilo Barthel of FC Bayern Munich and 20 from Johannes Voigtmann of Baskonia Vitoria Gasteiz for the visitors.
In Group D, Poland remains unbeaten at 4-0, one win from qualification, after its 74-81 victory in Portugal as Mateusz Ponitka had 17 points, and Belarus topped Estonia 79-63 as Artsiom Parakhouski of Unics Kazan contributed 7 points and 9 rebounds. In Group E, Slovenia put itself in position to qualify with another win after its fourth came by 81-91 on the road against Kosovo. Klemen Prepelic led the charge with 27 points while Jaka Blazic of Baskonia added 13. In the same group, Ukraine topped host Bulgaria 67-72 for its first victory.
Montenegro is another team with one foot in next summer's tournament after it rolled 62-99 on the road in the Slovak Republic to stay perfect at 4-0. Georgia is right on its heels, however, after beating host Albania 64-84 with the help of a 12-point, 10-rebound double-double from Tornike Shengelia of Baskonia.
Hungary sits tall atop Group G at 4-0 after winning 80-88 in London against Great Britain as Adam Hanga of Baskonia flirted with a triple-double. Hanga poured in 18 points to go with 9 rebounds and 8 assists for the winners. In Group G's other game, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia rallied past host Luxembourg 74-82.