Maryam Gultekin scored 24 points to lead Sweden to their first victory at the U20 European Championship for Women by beating Russia 71-61 in Grobina.
Gultekin added four rebounds, five assists and four steals while Danielle Hamilton collected 15 points and seven rebounds. But it was not enough as Sweden were already condemned to last place in Group B and will face off against Bulgaria, Germany and Romania to avoid demotion to Division B.
|Danielle Hamilton had 15 points for Sweden in their win.|
Russia, who had already booked first place in the group, dropped to 2-1 despite 11 points from Anastasiya Shilova.
Sweden clearly came out with more motivation, looking to finally win and opened the game on a 14-0 run and built a 17-2 advantage. But Russia scored the final seven points of the first quarter for a 17-9 Swedish lead.
And the Russians finished off the 17-0 run for a 19-17 lead. Sweden answered with an 8-0 surge for a 25-19 lead and were ahead 31-29 at the break.
The game was close throughout the third period, which ended deadlocked at 46-46.
Leading by one point, Sweden used a 7-0 run for a 58-50 lead and would increase the cushion to 10 points over the course of the fourth.
Meanwhile Latvia rebounded from their first loss of the U20 European Championship for Women by beating Ukraine 90-61.
Sabine Niedola had 15 points and seven steals, Ieva Krastina hit for 15 points, Laura Purina scored 14 points and Anete Klintsone added 10 points for Latvia, who improved to 2-1 in the group.
Ukraine finished third with a 1-2 record despite 17 points, nine rebounds and four blocks from Olesia Malashenko. Olga Maznichenko added 11 points and Alina Iagupova chipped in seven rebounds and 4 assists but turned the ball over 14 times.
Ukraine went ahead 7-5 only to see Latvia go on a 10-0 run and eventually push the lead to 13 points before it was 23-12 after one period
The tournament hosts opened the second quarter on a 19-4 surge to build a 42-16 advantage. Ukraine would use a 12-4 answer and trim the gap to 46-28 at the break.
A 14-4 start to the third period opened the cushion to 28 points - 60-32. Ukraine were able to pull within 20 points but it was 72-46 after three quarters.
Latvia increased the bulge to 34 points and Ukraine did not get closer than 26 points in the final frame.