|Sancho Lyttle and Spain fired theirway into the second round with a game to spare|
By Paul Nilsen
Turning Point: It was a one-shot game at 19-16, but as soon as Elisa Aguilar dropped successive three-pointers, the stable door was wide open as far as Italy were concerned - even if they did play impressively hard until the final buzzer and at one stage got back to within six points.
Stats Don't Lie: Italy had very few easy scores and only had eight foul shots in forty minutes. Meanwhile the Spanish frontcourt did a good job containing Kathrin Ress, the star of Italy's opening win - limiting her to 27.3% floor shooting.
Game Hero: Sancho Lyttle was in great form and finished with a double-double of 19 points and 13 rebounds.
Spain eased their way into the second round of EuroBasket Women 2013 after avoiding another late wobble to take a 71-59 Group B success against a spirited and determined Italy in Vannes.
Generally dominant and especially at 51-32, there was briefly a sense of déjà vu as Italy conducted a revival to get within six points - something very reminiscent of day one when Russia threatened to overturn an 18 point deficit.
Whilst Italy were less convincing in terms of ever realistically looking like finishing their fight back, they did push Spain all the way, something acknowledged by head coach Lucas Mondelo and also Amaya Valdemoro after the final buzzer.
"Italy played really hard and made us have to play our best in order to win the game" said Mondelo.
Valdemoro added, "We are lucky that we have 12 amazing players who all put something very different on the floor.
"Especially because we needed this when Italy came back into the game and I thought we did a pretty good job to get the win."
It was when a triple by Giulia Gatti brought Italy back to 60-54 with just less than four minutes remaining that the alarm bells didn't exactly ring, but were ready to go.
However in the end, they didn't sound as Spain held firm, helped by a combined 27 points from Alba Torrens and Amaya Valdemoro.
20-year-old Francesca Dotto impressed for Italy with 12 points and four assists as well as her defensive intensity.
Italy Player Giorgia Sottana
"Congratulations to Spain because they played very good basketball, they have a lot of talent. During some parts of the game we thought we could do it, but they have 12 amazing players. We wanted to test our limits, see where we stand with our young team. We tried our best, but we lost."
Spain Player Amaya Valdemoro
"We knew it could be a hard game because they play like us, with the same energy. At the beginning it was a very slow game, and we didn't start well, but we have 12 players, no matter who plays, she always gives her best. Then, when they came back in the fourth quarter, we did a great job."
Italy Head Coach Roberto Ricchini
"We were very impressed with the way Spain played against Russia. We knew it was going to be difficult, we have a very young team but we wanted to show that we can play against a very good and experienced team. Anyway this game gives us confidence for tomorrow."
Spain Head Coach Lucas Mondelo
"I am very happy because until this moment our championship has been very good. We knew that it could be a hard game because they are playing very well and they plan their games very well. Before starting we had two goals: First, winning and qualifying; second, using more players because this is a long tournament. We achieved both goals, although Italy fought until the end and we had to do our best until the end. For the next games, we still have room to improve."