|03 August 2005|
Lithuania retained their 100% record at the Termosteps U16 European Championship Men in Leon, Spain after 2 games of the quarter-final round.
Lithuania had little trouble seeing off Russia, 65-81 in what proved to be a one-sided contest.
It took Lithuanian little time for them to stamp their authority on Russia.
The Lithuanians had registered 11 points in the opening three minutes of the first quarter before Russia could get their first points on the board.
It was Pavel Gromyko who finally hit a shot after Russia's first four attempts went astray, 2-11. And that would be the story of the opening half for Russia as their offense continually failed to click.
Lithuania, on the other hand, were on fire, hitting 10/14 shots in the opening quarter and racing out to an 11-27 advantage.
The second quarter was no different.
Russia's leading scorer Dmitri Khvostov was not his usual self, attempting just 4 shots in the first half and making one. Gromyko also had trouble with his shot, going 3/10 from the field in the opening 2 quarters.
If the Lithuanians missed a shot, more often than not they got a second chance thanks to some great work on the boards by center Vaidas Cepukaitis who grabbed a game high 11 offensive rebounds.
Russia flirted with a comeback attempt in the third quarter, getting as close as 3-points (47-50) on a Gromyko jumper midway through the quarter. But Lithuania answered immediately, closing the quarter with a 16-3 run to restore a 16-point lead going into the fourth, 50-66.
It was plain sailing then on for Lithuania and they stretched away for their 5th consecutive win of the tournament.
Cepukaitis finished with 18 points and 17 rebounds for Lithuania, while guard Zygimantas Janavicius had a game high 20 points.
Spain will join Lithuania in the semi-finals after completing a 58-79 win over Ukraine.
Other than a brief period in the second quarter when Ukraine edged ahead, Spain were always in control in what ended up a comfortable victory.
Forward Pere Tomas continued his good form after an excellent display on Tuesday against Russia. He was even more efficient against Ukraine, nailing a game high 31 points in just 27 minutes. He also grabbed 9 rebounds.
Lithuania and Spain will meet on Thursday to establish first place in the group.