Portugal and Slovenia to battle for precious promotion ticket
SOFIA (Bulgaria) - The penultimate day of the FIBA U18 Women's European Championship, Division B saw the top tier dreams of Portugal and Slovenia live on, while Serbia and Slovakia's promotion hopes ended.
Portugal were the first to make Sunday's pivotal title game as they won their Semi-Final contest 62-55 against Serbia. They had trailed by double-digits, but a tremendous 20-8 last quarter handed them victory. Laura Silva stood out with 15 points and 9 rebounds for Portugal, with Serbia reflecting on a damaging 25 turnovers.
Slovenia booked their place in the Final with an 82-48 lockdown of Slovakia. As usual, Ajsa Sivka was influential and contributed an eye-catching 10 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists and 3 steals. In a big team effort, Sivka was one of five Slovenian ballers who reached double-figures for points.
Lockdown defense has been important for Slovenia throughout the tournament
Elsewhere, Netherlands and Croatia will fight it out for a top five finish after the former took a 67-61 win against Bulgaria. While Monika Borisova starred for the hosts with 16 points, Iris Vennema matched the tally for the winning team. Croatia were too hot for Romania and won 89-47. Nika Rodek barely missed en route to 14 points, Lucija Banovic top scored with 17 points.
In the other classification matchups a stunning 21 points and 18 boards from Faith Ehi Etute carried Luxembourg past Ukraine 73-67. Great Britain rode past Estonia 75-56 as Carys Olivia Roy scored 16 points, while Austria pipped Norway 64-60, as Anna Alborova excelled with 21 points. Finally, Ireland outscored Iceland 68-58, with Amy Duggan netting 21 points.