Spain, France coast to opening wins


Spain put on a show to tip off their Termosteps U16 European Championship Women with a 71-30 thrashing of Germany.

Queralt Casas was the only Spaniard to score in double figures in the Group D encounter with 14 points but 11 players scored for Jose Ignacio Hernandez's team, including three with eight points.

Spain struggled from the outside, hitting just 2-of-12 from long range, but forced 30 Germany turnovers and held Alexandra Maerz's team to just 26 percent shooting for the game

The leading scorer for Germany was Sonja Greinacher with seven points.

Spain never let Germany into the game, forcing five turnovers in the first five minutes and opening a 9-0 lead. Germany's first points came on foul shots by Christina Schnorr at the 4:35 mark of the first quarter. And Finja Schaake didn't make Germany's first basket until 1:12 left to make it a 13-4 before Casas drained a three-pointer for a 16-4 advantage after one period. Mariona Ortiz's three-ball opened the second quarter as Spain pushed the advantage to 23-4. The Spanish onslaught continued throughout the rest of the period and Elena Diaz's basket made it 37-15 at intermission.

Spain tallied the first seven points of the second half and did not allow Germany into the scoring column for nearly five minutes. And Marina Delgado had two baskets in a 10-1 close to the third period for a 56-21 lead. Hernandez's girls did not let up in the fourth as Germany would get no closer than 23 points in the final frame.

France cruised to an opening victory in Group A of the Termosteps U16 European Championship Women, beating Latvia convincingly 74-54.

Adja Konteh (France)
Adja Konteh (France) had 13 points
Arnaud Guppillotte's French blew the game wide open in the second period with Hélčna Akmouche leading four players in double figures with 14 points. Adja Konteh added 13 points while Florine Basque and Jodie Cornelie each
had 10.

Laura Ozolina had 14 points in a losing effort and Ieva Eida chipped in 13 for Maija Kublina's team.

Latvia's gameplan took a big hit in the first minute when starting shooting guard Anete Kirsteine was forced out with an injury to her left knee. And Akmouche made three straight baskets in helping France to an 8-4 lead. It was 15-6 after a Basque three-ball and Guppillotte's side pushed the margin to 10 points before leading 21-12 after one period. Marion Lemonnier started the second with a three-pointer and Konteh scored 10 points in a 12-4 French run for a 40-23 cushion at the break.

Latvia kept the deficit at 17 points - 46-29 - before Akmouche and Eléonore Grossemy knocked down three-balls in a 13-3 surge as France increased their gap to 59-32. But Kublina's Latvians put together a push to close the third quarter, out-scoring France 10-2 on the strength of triples by Eida and Kristiana Pumpure to trail 61-42 going into the fourth. Cornelie and Jenny Fouasseau opened the scoring in the fourth however to re-establish a 23-point lead. And Latvia would not get closer than 20 points the rest of the way.

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