MATOSINHOS (FIBA U20 Women’s European Championship 2016) – Spain have been crowned back-to-back champions in the most dramatic of fashion, defeating Italy 71-69 in Portugal on Sunday evening.
Having rallied back from 19 points adrift led by the almost-unanimous tournament MVP Cecilia Zandalasini, Italy had the chance to send the game to overtime, only for their desperation buzzer-beater to rim out, sending the Spaniards into wild raptures.
Earlier in the day, Russia made up for their Semi-Final disappointment to hold on for a 78-72 win over Serbia, whilst in the other major game of interest, Turkey preserved their Division A status with a nail-biting victory over Greece in the Classification Game for 13th to 14th Place.
They will next year play in Division B with Germany and Slovak Republic, whose fate had been sealed 24 hours earlier.
Meanwhile, Slovenia, Lithuania and Hungary return to Division A for 2017, with the latter grabbing the third and final spot with a tense 50-49 win over a heartbroken Czech Republic team.
Slovenia made up for their loss to Lithuania earlier in the tournament, easing to a 62-45 victory in the tournament conclusion.
The FIBA U20 Women’s European Championship Division A standings are:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Slovak Republic