Greece, the hosts of the U16 European Championship Women 2010, had another reason to celebrate on Day 3 of of Group D action, as they bettered the Czech Republic 59-57 in a close and dramatic encounter.
The Czechs suffered their second straight loss after falling against Belgium yesterday. In Tereza Vyoralova they had the game's top performer but her 20 points and eight rebounds were not sufficient enough for her team to avoid defeat. Both teams have qualified for the second round.
After an evenly matched first quarter (16-16), Greece took the lead in the second. Fotini Priona hit a jumper from three point distance to run up the score to 19-24 in favour of the Greeks. The hosts were not able to hang on to the lead though. The Czech team scored five unanswered points to tie the game again 26-26 at the break.
The game remained a hard fought affair also in the second half. Both sides were badly looking for their second victory after they were able to beat Belarus in earlier match-ups. The lead changed hands on a few occasions and the Czechs entered the fourth quarter with a slim 39-38 advantage.
In front of their home crowd in Ptolemaida the Greeks played with a lot of heart. Five unanswered points in the final two minutes provided a big lift (49-56). The Czechs gave their all to come back but it was Greece who had reason to celebrate after the final buzzer rang.
Vasiliki Tarla had a huge game for Greece and a double-double of 11 points and 16 rebounds. Priona added 13 points, while Stella Fouraki tabbed a double double (10 points, 12 boards) as well.