Slovak Republic win the derby, only four teams left unbeaten
SOFIA (2016 FIBA U16 European Championship Division B) - Czech Republic basketball is not for the faint-hearted. For the third time in as many games, it all came down to the final possession.
They had already beaten Bulgaria by two, and Belgium by three points, before their luck ran out against the Slovak Republic. Lubos Kovar, Viktor Telecky and Tomas Mikyska all had shots to either tie or win the game, but all three came up short. Slovak Republic held on for a 64-62 win.
Marcel Batovsky hit his biggest shot of the Championship so far, a three-pointer to set the final score. That was his only attempt from beyond the arc, and he collected 7 points and 5 rebounds in just over 21 minutes of play. Martin Danielic led all scorers with 16, Juraj Palenik had 12 for the winning side. For the Czechs, Mikyska had 15 points and 8 rebounds.
Both of those teams are at 2-1, and Belgium joined a three-way tie at the top of Group D with a 67-52 win over Georgia. A game got de-coupled by De Vreught's 18 points and 8 assists, and De Ridder's 14 points and 15 rebounds. Bulgaria got their first win in the group, a 99-76 triumph against Iceland, thanks to Tsvetomir Chernokozhev's 28 points in as many minutes.
While Group D has no unbeaten teams, Group A features a couple of them. Belarus continued their dominance with a 64-54 win against Portugal, and Russia had no trouble against Denmark in a 94-75 win. The Netherlands claimed a win in a Benelux derby, defeating Luxembourg 86-49 to climb up to a 2-1 record.
Israel took control of Group B, overpowering England 87-80 in a game that saw no double digit leads for either team. Ofek Malka and Eidan Alber combined for 43 points as Israel held on to a perfect 3-0 record. Hungary joined England at 2-1 with a 90-66 victory over Ireland. Adam Somogyi had 25 points and 8 assists for the winners. The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia were the highest scoring team on Saturday, beating Scotland 100-47.
In Group C, Slovenia stayed perfect with a 71-59 win over Ukraine, who dropped to 2-1. Nik Dragan struggled from the field, but still managed to finish with 17 points and 18 rebounds, nine of them being offensive. Romania defeated Kosovo 89-52 to join Ukraine at 2-1, and Norway registered their first win, a 78-64 success at the expense of Austria. Mikal Gjerde was on fire, finishing with 31 points on 59% shooting from the floor.