France came to Greece looking to defend the title they captured on home soil two years ago but they leave without a medal, and miss out on the Olympics.
|Audrey Sauret (France)|
At least they depart the beautiful coastal city of Patras on a winning note, seeing off a determined Belgium 94-75 on Sunday in the last classification game.
They finish the tournament in fifth place, while the Belgians have to settle for sixth.
Belgium, blown out in a quarter-final by the Czech Republic, rebounded with a success over Slovakia on Saturday and they pushed the French hard for three quarters before Les Bleues pulled away.
Anke De Mondt´s three-pointer with 3:13 left in the third gave Belgium a 59-56 lead.
But Cathy Melain scored to cut the deficit to one and then fellow co-captain Audrey Sauret made the go-ahead basket with 1:30 remaining in the quarter to give France the lead for good.
Melain, an outstanding guard for Alain Jardel´s troops, spearheaded the French attack with 30 points on 10 of 19 shooting from the field, including two of five from three-point range, and a perfect eight of eight from the free throw line.
Melain also had six assists.
Ann Wauters had 22 points and 16 rebounds for Belgium.