San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker scored a game-high 32 points as France overcame a 14-point halftime deficit to defeat Spain 75-72 in overtime on Sept. 20 and advance to the FIBA Europe championship game on Sept.22.
With France leading 69-67 late in overtime, Spain’s Victor Claver missed a three-point attempt and then fouled Parker. Parker sunk both of his free throws to give France a 71-67 cushion with 42 seconds left in overtime.
Parker scored 12 of France's first 16 points but Spain controlled the paint, scoring 12-of- their-18 first quarter points close to the basket as they took a 18-14 lead after 10 minutes of play. With the score tied at 18, Parker went to the bench and France suffered offensively, while Sergio Rodriguez was providing Spain with fluidity.
A Xavi Rey dunk 1:10 into the second quarter sparked a 13-0 Spain run that Fernando San Emeterio capped off with a lay-up in transition with 3:22 remaining in the half.
Parker drove to the basket and scored France's first points in almost seven minutes, to reduce the lead to 31-20 with 2:31 left in the first half, but Sergio Llull split two free throws and sent Spain to the break with a 14-point lead (34-20).
France was 0-for-8 on three-pointers in the first half.
Antoine Diot knocked down France’s first a triple of the game in 10 attempts, to reduce the lead to 35-26 with 6:49 left in the third quarter.
He drilled another three –pointer at the 5:35 mark of the quarter and Parker sunk two free throws to cut the gap to 37-31.
Rudy Fernandez hit a triple on the other end with 3:43 remaining in the third to give Spain some breathing room, 42-33, but back-to-back three-pointers from Mickael Gelabale and Parker brought France within three points, 44-41, with 2:24 left in the third quarter.
Sergio Llull replied with a trey of his own from the left wing and restored a 49-43 Spanish advantage at the end of the third frame.
Gelabale again hit a jumper with 8:08 in the fourth quarter and France inched within 49-48, the smallest gap since Spain's second-quarter burst.
Fernandez slammed a dunk home to give Spain a 60-53 cushion but Florent Pietrus hit his first triple of the tournament, Nicolas Batum also scored from beyond the arc and Parker made a lay-up with 3:24 left to tie the score at 61.
Alexis Ajinca made one-of-two two free throws to tie the score at 65 with 40 seconds remaining to the end of regulation and Rodriguez misfired on a lay-up attempt.
After Fernandez blocked Parker’s shot as he drove to the basket with 11 seconds left, Spain had one last chance to obtain the win in regulation. However, Jose Calderon’s three-point shot was off the mark and then Claver missed from under the basket with two seconds remaining.
Spain’s Marc Gasol, who finished with 19 points and nine rebounds, scored the first two points in overtime but Parker and Diot went a combined eight-of-eight from the foul line, and Spain was just 2-for-10 from the floor in the extra period.
Parker finished the game 11-of-19 from the floor and 9-of-11 from the charity stripe. He also grabbed six rebounds. Diot was the only other player in double figures for France with 10 points.
Fernandez added 17points and Rodriguez contributed 11 points for Spain.