Strunc Delivers At The Death For France

17.07.2011

Classification Roundup

Hhadydia Minte (France)
Hhadydia Minte was a force at the glass for France, hauling in 21 rebounds to go with her 15 points

France edged out Ukraine 63-62 in a thrilling finish to take fifth place at the U20 European Championship Women.

Ukraine had come back from a 13-point deficit to take it to the final stages, but after Isabelle Strunc put France on top with two seconds left, a last-ditch shot from Alina Iagupova missed as France clung on.

France began the second half with a 10-0 spurt that saw their lead balloon to 43-30, but then gave it all back again as a three-pointer from Lyudmyla Naumenko sparked a 14-4 Ukraine run to cut the gap back to three, 47-44, at the end of the third quarter.

France kept their noses in front for most of the fourth quarter, but after Iagupova had cut the gap to one, 56-55, with a driving lay-up and free throw, Krystyna Matsko's lay-up put them on top.

Iagupova then blocked a three-pointer from Strunc and Olesia Malashenko's lay-up extended the gap to three, 59-56.

Hhadydia Minte's three wiped that out and France were back in front, 61-60, on Clementine Samson's jump-shot with 25 seconds left.

Oleksandra Chek replied for Ukraine but Strunc nailed a jump-shot with two seconds left to give France the edge.

Ukraine drew up a final play but Iagupova's off-balance jump-shot missed.

Minte led France with 15 points and 21 rebounds, while Strunc had 14 points.

Malashenko poured in 21 points for Ukraine - 15 of them in the first half - while Olga Maznichenko had 14 and Iagupova 12 and nine rebounds.

Italy took seventh place ahead of Great Britain with a 60-48 win in their classification game.

Italy finished the first quarter on a 12-2 run, capped by Laura Spreafico's three-pointer, to take an 18-9 lead, and although Britain found a way to live with the Italians thereafter, they never threatened to close the gap.

Federica Tognalini led Italy with 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Spreafico had 12 points and six boards.

Katrin Chiemeka and Temi Fagbenle had 10 points each for Britain, who can reflect positively on an eighth-place finish in their first Division A tournament.


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