04 - 13
August 2017
12 Bronagh Power Cassidy (IRL)
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Ireland make history with first-ever promotion en route to title clash with Germany

DUBLIN (FIBA U18 Women's European Championship 2017, Division B) - There was plenty to celebrate for the home crowd at the FIBA U18 Women's European Championship 2017, Division B with Ireland clinching a spot in the gold-medal game and securing a historic promotion to Division A.

Having started slow out of the blocks, the tournament hosts took over the initiative as the game went along to inscribe a 68-57 victory over Poland in the Semi-Finals after riding the energy in the stands in a strong fourth-quarter performance.

Claire Melia was the hero of the game for Ireland with a well-rounded contribution of 18 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, while Rachel Huijsdens was close to a double-double with 11 points and 9 rebounds to her name.

Having secured a place on the podium, the team also grabbed one of the three available promotion tickets, which is a historic benchmark for a country that has never been represented in Division A at any level before.

Germany will be the team joining the Irish girls in the title-decider after registered a 64-55 victory over Great Britain in the other Semi-Final with Nyara Sabally posting a monster double-double of 21 points, 18 rebounds, 6 steals and 4 blocks for an overall efficiency rating of 41.

Luisa Geiselsoder added 18 points and 8 boards for the winners, while Shauna Harrison collected a team-high 16 points and 6 rebounds in a losing effort for the British side.

Poland and Great Britain will face off for bronze and the only remaining spot in Division A in the third-place game that promises to be every bit as exciting as the contest for the top prize.

Belarus and Portugal came out on top in the Classification Games for 5-8th places, with the Belarusian side nipping Israel 64-63 and the Portuguese coming away with a 65-55 victory over Romania.

Bulgaria defeated Slovak Republic 73-67 in the Classification Games for 9-12th places, while Finland followed suit by downing the Netherlands with a convincing 69-50 scoreline soon after.

In the battles for places lower down in the standings, Iceland won the Nordic battle against Norway 59-55, Ukraine had a 59-51 edge over Austria, Luxembourg eased past Switzerland 77-50, Estonia showed superiority over Georgia with an 89-51 victory, while Albania downed Moldova 101-61.