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Lithuania win heavyweight bout with Germany, will face France in Final
SAMSUN (FIBA U18 European Championship 2016) – Lithuania downed Germany in a showdown of heavyweights to reach the final of the FIBA U18 European Championship 2016 where they will take on France, who defeated Italy in the second Semi-Final.
Lithuania and Germany came into the tournament as two of the top title contenders and they played like it with a title-bout worthy game, which Lithuania took 69-62 thanks to 24 points from Arnoldas Kulboka and 18 from Arnas Velicka. Lithuania are back in their first Final since 2012. Germany failed to reach their first ever U18 title game despite 33 points from Kostja Mushidi.
France set up a date with Lithuania by beating the Italians 82-72 with an outstanding performance from Frank Ntilikina, who collected 23 points, 4 rebounds, 9 assists and 5 steals. France's last appearance in the U18 title game was 2009. Alessandro Lever paced Italy with 25 points, but it was not enough and Italy will square off against Germany for the third spot on the podium.
While the top four have already book their spots in the FIBA U19 World Championship 2017, Spain and Bosnia and Herzegovina will clash for Europe's fifth spot after winning in Classification 5-8.
Spain got 24 points and 14 rebounds from Sergi Martinez in a 70-55 win over Russia. Bosnia and Herzegovina defeated Finland 95-72 as Dzanan Musa led the way with 28 points and 7 assists. Russia and Finland will play for seventh place.
The other major drama came in Classification 13-16 where Israel and Sweden were relegated to Division B - after having won promotion from there in 2015.
Israel's heartbreaking tournament continued as Karlo Uljarevic nailed a three-pointer at the buzzer in Croatia's 87-84 win. Josip Barnjak scored 20 points to help Croatia reach the Game for 13th Place, the winner of which will remain in Division A. They will take on Latvia in that game as the Latvians knocked off Sweden 91-82 with Roberts Blumbergs scoring 25 points and Arturs Strautins just missing a triple-double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 9 assists. Sweden will play Israel for 15th place.
In Classification 9-12 action, Serbia got past Turkey 73-58 thanks to 15 points from Stefan Momirov and 9 points and 15 rebounds from Milos Glisic. Greece got 12 points and a layup with 3 seconds left from Dimitrios Moraitis as they held off Slovenia 70-68.
Re-live all the action on the FIBA U18 European Championship live feed.
Germany 62-69 Lithuania
Italy 72-82 France
Spain 70-55 Russia
Finland 72-95 Bosnia and Herzegovina
Turkey 58-73 Serbia
Greece 70-68 Slovenia
Sweden 82-91 Latvia
Croatia 87-84 Israel