17 - 24
July 2016
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Cyprus win the Championship, Azerbaijan and Moldova join them on the podium

NICOSIA (FIBA U16 European Championship 2016 Division C) - Cyprus finished off a perfect Championship with a 62-50 win over Azerbaijan in the Final. Moldova grabbed third place.

Cyprus ran away to a double-digit lead early in the game. By the end of the first quarter the score was 25-14, and the difference grew to 15 points at the half. There was no coming back for Azerbaijan as Cyprus held on for a 62-50 win to keep the trophy in Nicosia.

Ball control proved to be crucial. Azerbaijan turned the ball over 30 times, Cyprus had 18 steals and won the fast break points category 12-4. The ball was moving well on offence for Cyprus, their 22 assists made up for a 47-39 defeat in the rebounding battle.

Rovertos Alexandrou had 20 points on 9-of-15 shooting from the floor for the tournament winners. Polys Iliadis with 14 points was the only other double digit performer for Cyprus. Alex Akhundov had 12 points and eight rebounds for Azerbaijan.

Moldova had no trouble against Gibraltar in the Third-Place game. An 81-56 win was clinched after a 24-8 third period, and Ivan Popovschi and Nicolae Grubii combined for 36 points for the winners. Alejandro Garcia had 26 points, 9 rebounds, 4 steals and a couple of blocks for Gibraltar.

Malta finished 5th after a 72-57 win over Andorra, with 50 of their points coming from Keith Dimech and Nicholas Formosa. Pietro Ugolini had 36 points and 14 rebounds to give San Marino a 73-67 win over Armenia in the battle for 7th place. Wales defeated Albania 67-53 to win 9th spot.

Ugolini's efforts were recognised in the award ceremony. He was selected to the All-Star Five, joined by Iliadis from Cyprus, Papuna Kirtadze and Saadetin Donat from Azerbaijan, and Vadim Raducan from Moldova. Kirtadze, who had a triple-double against Malta on Day 4, finished with 13.7 points, 8.5 rebounds, 5.7 assists and 3.3 steals per game - more than enough to make him the Most Valuable Player of the Championship.