|02 August 2008|
Hosts Romania got their U20 European Championship Division B challenge off to a great start with an 82-76 win over Poland.
Titus Nicoara had 28 points and 11 rebounds for the Romanians in the Group D clash.
They led 31-20 by the end of the first quarter and remained on top the rest of the way although Poland's Michal Nowakowski (20 pts) made things interesting at the end of the game.
His three-ball with 38 seconds left trimmed Romania's advantage to 80-76 but Nicoara replied with a jumper and Patryk Pelka was off target with a shot from the arc for Poland their next trip down the floor.
Dardan Berisha also had 20 points for the Poles.
The Netherlands beat Hungary 82-66 in the other Group D game.
Orlan Jackman had 19 points, 10 rebounds and three steals to lead Great Britain to a 90-73 triumph over Finland.
The Brits were in command of the Group A game by half-time with a 49-29 lead and cruised the rest of the way.
Antti Kanervo had 19 points in defeat for the Finns.
Portugal won 76-71 over FYR Macedonia in the group's other clash.
Fábio Lima erupted for 22 points and pulled down eight rebounds for the Portuguese, who stormed out to a 21-7 lead but had to hold on as Aleksandar Kostoski led the Macedonians back.
Three times they closed the gap to just three points, including with 11 seconds remaining when Kostoski buried a three-ball.
But the Portuguese held on for a narrow win.
Kostoski scored 20 points in defeat.
In Group B, Germany hammered Azerbaijan 124-38 and Sweden defeated the Czech Republic, 93-88.
Jeffery Taylor scored 27 points, hauled in eight rebounds and handed out six assists for the Swedes.
In Group C, Estonia thrashed Switzerland 87-61 and Belgium hammered Austria 91-60.