The lower-seeded Neptunas side drew first blood against Lietuvos Rytas in the Betsafe LKL Semi-Finals, stealing home-court advantage with an 84-79 victory on the road in Vilnius on Monday.
Despite problems with taking care of possessions in the first two quarters, the Kazys Maksvytis-coached side managed to stay in the game and pulled away with strong play after intermission.
The visitors from Klaipeda used a 12-4 run in the fourth period to go up 70-58 with 5:12 remaining in the game. A couple of defensive stops allowed Lietuvos Rytas within 5 points, but they ultimately couldn't turn the tide.
Simas Galdikas had a big night with a team-high 17 points and 6 rebounds, Edgaras Zelionis collected 15 points and 8 rebounds, while Mindaugas Kacinas chipped in with 11 points and 8 boards.
For Lietuvos Rytas, Rokas Giedraitis had 18 points, while Chris Kramer double-doubled with 13 points, 10 assists and 5 steals. Travis Peterson also had 13 points.
The series moves to Klaipeda with Neptunas up 1-0. The second game will take place on Wednesday, May 30.