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Vorackova takes home MVP honors
ORADEA (FIBA Women’s European Championship 2018, Division B) – Moments before having a gold medal draped around her neck, Veronika Vorackova first had to step forward to receive the MVP award.
A year younger than most of her opponents, the Czech standout, who last summer played in FIBA Women’s EuroBasket 2017 on home soil, led a young Czech team who will mainly stay together for their Division A challenge in 2019.
Vorackova ended the tournament with averages of 11.0 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.6 assists, shooting at 47.6 percent from the floor, including an impressive 47.1 percent from downtown.
There was some slight reason to smile for losing Finalist Aryna Masko, with a spot on the All-Star Five awaiting her. The Belarus forward managed 15.0 points per game, including a vital 14 against Lithuania in the all-important Semi-Final win that sealed their Division A status.
Despite losing that Semi-Final, Lithuania were still smiling, defeating hosts Romania in the Third-Place Game to grant them the last remaining Division A ticket. Driving their effort was Gabija Meskonyte. Playing in her final FIBA youth event, the power forward finished with her second-best stat return in FIBA competition.
Meanwhile, despite Turkey have a below-par tournament, center Ilayda Guner shone out individually, finishing as the championship’s leading scorer with 22.9 points per night. This went with 9.7 rebounds, meaning she finished just shy of a tournament double-double average.
Another team to finish outside of the medal race, but have an individual player stand out was Great Britain. Savannah Wilkinson led the British offense with 20.9 points a night, earning her the last remaining spot in the All-Star Five.