Germans, Belgians Remain Undefeated


Germany, Sweden, Estonia and Belgium all won on Wednesday on the first day of Qualifying Round action for places one through eight at the U20 European Championship Division B.

The Germans remained undefeated in the tournament being staged in Targu Mures, Romania, with an 81-75 win over FYR Macedonia.

Elias Harris had 29 points and seven rebounds for Germany, who trailed 63-58 at the start of the fourth quarter but battled back.

Oskar Faßler's basket capped an 8-0 run and left the Germans in front at 66-63 with 7:33 remaining.

Faßler and Co then looked as if they had taken total command of proceedings when opening up a 73-65 advantage, only for the Macedonians to show great resolve and hit back with an 8-0 run to level the scores at 73-73 with 1:46 to go.

After a Germany timeout, a pair of Harris dunks fired them to a strong finish and left them alone at the top in Group E.

Portugal were upset 80-66 by Sweden, who got 20 points from Kim Palmqvist.

The Scandinavians took control by outscoring their opponents 24-15 in the first quarter. Jeffery Taylor had a monster game for the Swedes with 15 points and 13 rebounds.

Germany top the group at 2-0 and they are followed by Portugal and Sweden (both 1-1) and then FYR Macedonia (0-2).

In Group F, unbeaten Belgium showed no signs of slowing down in an 85-79 win over hosts Romania.

B. Hockins Munda Mawejanangila had 23 points and five assists and also came up with three steals for the winners.

Belgium trailed by one at half-time but impressed in the second half, particularly in the fourth quarter when they limited the Romanians to just five points.

Estonia edged the Netherlands in the pool's other game, 69-65.

Roeland Schaftenaar had 20 points and 20 rebounds for the Dutch, who opened up a 49-39 lead near the end of the third quarter but weren't able to put the Estonians away.

Tanel Kurbas scored two of his team-high 22 points for Estonia during a 12-0 run that gave them a 55-53 advantage with just under seven minutes remaining.

The game stayed tight the rest of the way, with Jirian Roodheuvel's one-of-two effort at the charity stripe just nine seconds from the end cutting Estonia's lead to 67-65.

The Baltic country called timeout and when play resumed, Kurbas fed Rain Raadik and the center drilled a jump shot with three seconds left to seal the victory.

Belgian top the group at 2-0 and they are followed by the Netherlands and Estonia (both 1-1) and Romania (0-2).

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