Unbeaten UMMC Ekaterinburg take down Perfumerias Avenida in Final
ISTANBUL (Turkey) - UMMC Ekaterinburg captured their sixth EuroLeague Women title and made three in a row after edging out Perfumerias Avenida 78-68 in an absorbing title game in Istanbul.
The Russian juggernauts were not only crowned Champions again, they managed to do so without losing a single game during the campaign, winning all 10 games. However, they were pushed hard by their opponents since Avenida fought back from a double-digit defict in the second half to set up a nervous last quarter.
Turning point: The result was still in the balance heading into the last six minutes with only four points separating the teams. But in a vital two minutes or so, UMMC outscored their opponents 6-2 and it gave them the impetus to take over the game down the stretch.
Game heroes: UMMC frontcourt duo Brittney Griner and Emma Meesseman got it done. The former finished with 14 points and 8 boards while Meesseman contributed 19 points and 8 rebounds. There was also a classy effort from Courtney Vandersloot with a fine double-double of 12 points and 12 assists. Tifany Hayes showed out in defeat with 29 points for Avenida.
Stats don't lie: As well as they performed, Perfumerias Avenida were beaten up on the boards 46-30 and that was one of the difference-makers.
Bottom line: Perfumerias Avenida gave it everything and showed amazing heart and application to get back into the game, but probably just didn't have enough of their big guns firing all the time when they needed them. They might not have won the trophy, but they will be excited to have competed in their first Final Four since 2011 and to have given a tremendous account of themselves in what is their second best EuroLeague Women season in their entire history. As for UMMC, another trophy cabinet extension is needed after their latest success. Ultimately too good and too deep, they lived up to the hype as the favorites and made the most of escaping a close-run thing in the Semi-Finals against Fenerbahce Oznur Kablo.