After three one-sided quarter-finals of the Coupe de France, Asvel and Cholet offered a superb battle at the end of the program, Saturday in Trélazé. Led by five points at the start of the “money-time” (69-74, 36th), Villeurbanne came close to elimination. But Nando De Colo and Dee Bost took matters into their own hands to overthrow the Choletais (85-79) and join the last four of the Coupe de France. The Rhodaniens join Strasbourg, Le Mans and Monaco.
A month after flying over the Leaders Cup, MVP trophy at stake, De Colo resumed at the same pace in the Coupe de France (27 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists). In one half, the 2021 Olympic vice-champion had already planted 16 points, alternating long-distance successes at the start of the match (12-4, 5th) and clinical drives against the interiors of the Mauges club. His partner on the back lines, Dee Bost, offered a short break to Asvel with an award-winning basket before the break (37-31, 18th).
Deprived of their starting point guard TJ Campbell, injured Tuesday in the quarter-final second leg of the FIBA European Cup, the Choletais have not abdicated. A great collective action concluded by Justin Patton (12 points) behind the arc then a nice floater from the American pivot erased the lead built by Villeurbanne (44-42, 24th). But after De Colo, Bost came out of his box. The former Monegasque (18 points, 3 interceptions) chained three consecutive award-winning baskets to immediately recreate the gap (55-46, 26th).
Asvel against Strasbourg on Sunday
Back to the wall, Cholet revolted in the last quarter. More physical in defense, to contain De Colo and Bost, Laurent Vila’s players also found success in shooting with two consecutive long-distance arrows for Enzo Goudou-Sinha (67-66, 33rd). A step-back from Perry Ellis (17 points) even gave them the advantage for the first time a few possessions later (69-70, 35th) before a mini-break on a new basket from the American winger (69-74 , 36th).
More scorer than passer on Saturday, De Colo did not change his method to avoid premature elimination at his club. A basket in isolation on Artis then two free throws brought Asvel in the lead (75-74, 37th). Then, after an award-winning basket from Boris Dallo, it was still the former Choletais who crucified his training club with a perfect mid-distance shot (81-79, 39th), 36 seconds from the buzzer. A throw-in too late from Cholet and two throws from Dee Bost closed the deal in stride.
Sacred in 2019 and 2021, Asvel will face Strasbourg on Sunday in the semi-finals (5 p.m.). Monaco will be opposed to Le Mans in the other poster (2 p.m.).