04 - 09
July 2017
7 Andriani Kyprianou (CYP)
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Cyprus top Malta to clinch top spot in Division C

VALETTA (FIBA U18 Women’s European Championship 2017, Division C) - Cyprus continued their undefeated run at the FIBA U18 Women’s European Championship 2017, Division C and secured the top spot a day early after taking care of the tournament hosts Malta on Saturday evening.

After picking up a 71-52 win in the battle of two island nations, the Cypriot girls with a 3-0 mark can no longer be caught in the standings by their closest rivals Armenia, who will now finish second no matter what happens on the final day of action, with Malta settling for bronze.

Eleni Pilakouta double-doubled with 24 points and 16 rebounds

The Eleni Pilakouta-led Cyprus cruised to a big win after getting separation following the halftime break, setting themselves up for a comfortable and bump-free finish en route to their second triumph at the FIBA U18 Women's European Championship, Division C.

They also won gold at the 2014 event in Andorra.

Pilakouta collected 24 points, 16 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 blocks for Cyprus, with Despina Papaioannou and Varvara Efstathiou adding 16 and 11 points, respectively.

Malta could not stop the undefeated Cypriot girls

Malta's point guard Kristy Galea had a team-high 16 points, while Sophie Abela chipped in with 7 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks.

Having won the head-to-head contest against Armenia, now second with a 2-1 mark, on the very first day of the tournament, Cyprus would have the decisive tie-breaker advantage were they to slip up against Gibraltar on Sunday.

Earlier in the day, Gibraltar left Kosovo as the only winless team in the tournament after winning the head-to-head battle 74-55 and rising from the bottom of the standings after improving to a 1-2 record themselves.

Gibraltar got their first win in the tournament by defeating Kosovo

Marta Perez Castro dropped a tournament-high 32 points and grabbed 5 rebounds for Gibraltar, Mireya Benitez Lopez added 16 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 steals, while Anabella De La Chica chipped in with 14 points and 8 boards.

Kosovo could not be helped by 24 points from Besjana Martinaj, with Agnesa Rrahmani and Enisa Kamerolli, who added 6 rebounds and 6 dimes, also getting into double-digit territory with 10 points apiece.