In the fourth period, Pau Gasol led a 14-2 Spain run to turn that nine-point deficit into a three-point lead. “Until an opponent overcomes us, we will be there”.
France had an immensely hard time dealing with Pau Gasol, who scored a whopping 40 points, while grabbing 11 rebounds and recording three blocks during the game. Fans of France probably have a legitimate gripe with the officials, but France also failed to hit shots as Gasol was willing Spain back into the game at the rim and from the free-throw line.
With Gobert on his back, Gasol missed a layup in overtime, Gobert then dunked at the other end but, on the next Spain possession, Gobert fouled out and Gasol made both free throws to leave Spain behind by one.
Spain will play the victor of Friday’s semifinal, Lithuania vs. Serbia, in the gold medal game on Sunday.
Spain had lost twice in group play, while France was undefeated in seven games coming into the semifinal.
Rodriguez had 15 points for Spain.
It looked like Spain was going to win in regulation, but a Nicolas Batum three tied it with 14 seconds left.
When Tony Parker took France to the semifinals against Spain in Eurobasket 2015, we told you it would be a classic game.
Regardless of which side moves on to the final, it will need to be wary of the multidimensional Gasol.
Italy beat the Czech Republic 85-70 to place sixth. By virtue of Thursday’s loss, France advanced to next July’s last-chance qualifiers, which will be comprised of six countries.
Greece placed fifth because of its higher ranking by the sport’s ruling body.