Lithuania beats defending champion Argentina 79-75

Aug. 10, 2008, 8:01 a.m. (ET)

BEIJING (AP) Lithuania upset defending Olympic champion Argentina Sunday in the opening game of the Summer Games for both teams.

Denver Nuggets forward Linas Kleiza drilled a 3-pointer with 2.1 seconds left to give Lithuania a 78-75 lead and Ramunas Siskauskas' free throw sealed the win.

Lithuania, which turned up its defense in the third quarter, took a 51-45 lead at the end of the period. Argentina had difficult scoring as San Antonio Spurs star Manu Ginobili and Luis Scola of the Houston Rockets had just two points each in the period.

But Argentina battled back, and with 2:40 left, Ginobili sank a pair of free throws to cut the deficit to just four points. After a defensive stop, Ginobili bounced a 3-pointer off the rim, but Toronto Raptors guard Carlos Delfino was there for the offensive rebound and stick back to make it a two-point game. And with less than 90 seconds left, Scola's layup tied the game at 75-75.

Kleiza scored a team-high 13 points for Lithuania, the fourth place finishers at the 2004 Athens Games. Robertas Javtokas added 12. Ginobili led Argentina with 19 points, Delfino scored 13 points and Scola added 10.

In other games Sunday, former Bucknell standout J.R. Holden scored a game-high 19 points to lead European champion Russia to a 71-49 win against Iran. Russia scored 19 unanswered points to take a 24-5 lead against the Asian champions in the first quarter.

Iran fought back and trailed by just eight points at the end of the third quarter. But the Iranian comeback lost steam in the final period as the Russians stretched their lead to a game-high 22 points.

Iran, led by Mohammad Nikkhah with 16 points, committed 22 turnovers.

"We don't have much Olympic experience, but we gradually adapted to their style and played well in the second half," said Iranian center Hamed Ehadadi, who had a game-leading eight rebounds.

Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki scored 23 points on 78 percent shooting as Germany overwhelmed Olympic rookies Angola 95-66. Los Angeles Clippers' center Chris Kaman, who received his German citizenship just last month, led Germany with 24 points.

"I think we're a good team. We'll find out just how good on Wednesday, when we play Spain," Kaman said after the game.