Lauri Markkanen delivered a 43-point masterpiece to lead Finland to the Quarter-Finals as they defeated Croatia 94-86 behind a strong finish.
It ends a 55-year wait for the Susijengi as they will compete in the last eight at EuroBasket for the first time since 1967 as they set a showdown with Spain.
Turning Point: When Ivan Ramljak knocked down a triple with just under five minutes remaining, the game was tied at 77-77. What followed was an 8-0 run with three different Finnish scorers not named Markkanen. as two big triples from Shawn Huff and Sasu Salin helped seize the initiative down the stretch.
TCL Player of the Game: Markkanen was unstoppable for Finland. Forty-three points to set a new national team record at a major event, eclipsing his previous best of 34 points against the Czech Republic earlier in the tournament. An addition of 9 rebounds, three assists, and three steals for good measure, too.
Stats Don’t Lie: Croatia shot 53 percent from the floor but had 21 fewer attempts than their opponents, which was a notable difference. Markkanen was 17-of-23 from inside the arc, while Croatia was 20-of-31 as a team.
Bottom Line: Finland makes the last eight at EuroBasket for the third time and will be full of confidence heading into their matchup with Spain, with Markkanen continuing to reach new heights as part of a great tournament. It was not to be for Croatia, and their focus will soon return to the FIBA EuroBasket 2025 Pre-Qualifiers with their journey to the next edition already underway.