Plunge avenge loss to win FIBA 3x3 Neom Challenger 2023

NEOM (Saudi Arabia) - Plunge (LTU) come out on top against Hangzhou with a 21 - 18 victory to win to win the FIBA 3x3 Neom Challenger on November 4. 

The Winners

It was a rocky but promising start for Plunge (LTU) who suffered a close loss to Hangzhou in the opener, but not without mounting a huge comeback. Ovidijus Kaminskis and Rolandas Jakstas put up 6 each. It was another well-spread offensive game against Caguas next as the 21 - 12 victory booked them a spot in the knockout stages. 

Underdogs in their quarter-final matchup against Amsterdam, Plunge paid no mind as they stormed ahead early and stifled the Dutch offense. It was a well-fought game later on but the damage was done early as Plunge came away with the win. Jakstas led his side in points with 7.

It was Ignas Razutis and Kaminskis who had huge games in the Semi-final against Krupanj. Both put up 8 points in the winning effort as Plunge booked themselves a rematch against Hangzhou in the final. 

The Runners-up

Hangzhou (CHN) meant business from the start. They made easy work of Caguas Casa Pol with Goran Vidovic going off for 10 points in the opener. They took on Plunge next, who they would go on to face in the final. They came away with a narrow 21 - 19 victory. It wasn’t as straightforward though as they held a massive 10-point advantage at 19 - 9 but almost allowed the surging Plunge to catch up. Milos Supica’s free throw sealed the game for the Chinese side. 

They had yet another thriller, this time against Kandava Turiba. Francis Lacis scored 10 in a losing effort to Hangzhou who had an even spread offensive game to take home the victory. It was Princeton next who had been stellar all competition. Despite a mammoth showing from Henry Caruso who bagged himself 13 rebounds and 7 points, it was Milos Milovanovic who led his side with 6 points to seal a 15 - 17 win to book his team a spot in the final. 

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The Final

Plunge 21 - 18 Hangzhou

Deividas Rasys started the scoring for his side but the duo of Vladimir Trajkovic and Vidovic fought back. The game stayed relatively even-keel. However, Hangzhou did start to gain a lead later in the game. Milos Supica got the buckets to hand his side a 10 - 13 win. Rasys pulled Plunge back in before Jakstas evened the score. With just over two minutes to go, both teams found themselves at 17 points apiece. 

Ignas Razutis was the one to break the deadlock with a huge two followed by a quick bucket by Kaminskis. Despite Trajkovic getting one back, it just wasn’t enough as Kaminskis called game to hand his side their first Challenger win of the season. 

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MVP - Ignas Razutis 

Not only did Razutis score clutch buckets in the final against Hangzhou, he was crucial for his side all tournament. He finished second in Player Value with 37.5 along with 29 points. 


Plunge, alongside Hangzhou and Princeton earned themselves a spot at the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Hong Kong Masters held on November 25 - 26. 

Women’s Cup

The 3x3 Women’s Cup was won by the unstoppable Doha (QAT). They went unbeaten on their way to the final, last defeating home side Riyadh 21 - 7 to claim the victory. While they were a comprehensive team thriving on teamwork, Klaudia Sosnowska was recognised as MVP for her versatile showing and offensive firepower. 

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Final Standing

1. Plunge (LTU)

2. Hangzhou (CHN)

3. Princeton (USA)

4. Krupanj (LTU)

5. Amsterdam HiPRO (NED)

6. Warsaw Lotto (POL)

7. Kandava Turiba (LAT)

8. Jeddah (KSA)

9. Sant Feliu (ESP)

10. Hannover (GER)

11. Caguas Casa Pol (PUR)

12. Al Madinah (KSA)

13. Al Wakrah (QAT)

14. Dammam (KSA)

15. Riyadh (KSA)

16. Abha (KSA)