By Satuk Bugra Kutlugun
Turkey defeated Latvia 85-73 in the FIBA 2019 World Cup European Qualifiers Group B match on Friday at Bursa's TOFAS Sports Hall.
A 30-point outburst in the third quarter made the Turkish national basketball team victorious; shooting guard Melih Mahmutoglu showed his form from the three-point line, finishing with 24 points.
Baris Ermis also had an all-around game for the 12 Giant Men; he scored 12 points, grabbed 7 rebounds, dished out 9 assists and made 4 steals.
Sertac Sanli also chipped in for 15 points.
In his post-match comment, Turkey's head coach Ufuk Sarica said the team "got a chance to experience playing in Bursa after a long time. The national team hasn't played a game here in a while. We are glad that we won, but sad about the injury of Semih Erden."
Erden got knocked down just before the end of the second quarter of the game.
Latvian head coach Arnis Vecvagars said Turkey benefited 18 points from Latvia's turnovers.
"We tried to come back, but it's not easy here in Turkey against such a good team," he added.