Finland Down Romania To Make Step Towards Survival

16 January 2009

Finland took a giant step towards remaining in Division A by hammering previously unbeaten Romania 87-69 on Friday.

The Finns, who began the EuroBasket Women Relegation Round with back-to-back losses to Great Britain and Romania, have now won three straight games and hope to seal their place in the top flight with a victory in their final clash against winless Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Finland needed to beat the Romanians to keep their noses in front of Great Britain, who overcame Bosnia and Herzegovina earlier in the day to improve to 3-2.

Now, Britain need to upset Romania in their last game to have a chance to remain in Division A.

Heta Korpivaara picked a good time to have her best game in EuroBasket Women Division A for Finland.

Averaging 7.6 points before, she had 29 points.

Finland landed some important blows when they reeled off nine consecutive points - six scored by Tiina Sten - for a 22-11 advantage in the first quarter.

Romania did manage to remain within striking distance for a half, going to the changing rooms at the interval trailing 45-38.

Early in the third quarter they closed the gap to 46-41 on a three-point play by Annemarie Parau.

They got no closer the rest of the way.

Finland opened a 68-52 lead by the end of the frame and then pulled away for a convincing triumph over the final 10 minutes.

Sten finished with 15 points.

For Romania, Maria Pascalau poured in 20.

Finland hit 12 of 21 shots from behind the arc in the victory compared to just five of 17 for Romania. 

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