France Bounce Czechs To Take Third


France claimed third place in the U18 European Championship Women on Sunday with a comprehensive 77-66 defeat of the Czech Republic in Budapest.

Sandrine Gruda (France)
Sandrine Gruda
The French, whose title dreams were ended by Serbia & Montenegro in Saturday's semi-finals, effectively won the match in the first quarter after registering a 32-15 advantage.

That lead was stretched to 47-27 by half-time and although the Czechs mounted a brave second-half comeback, it never looked like being enough to turn the match around.

France ace Sandrine Beatrice Gruda, the leading scorer in the competition, gave another demonstration of her blossoming talent by pouring in 29 points while Anne-Sophie Raymonde Pagnier added 14.

The Czechs had two players reach 14 points - Michaela Zrustova and Kamila Stepanova - but the team's dire early showing ultimately proved decisive.

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