Latvia Accelerate Past Sweden

13 July 2009

Latvia ran Sweden off the court 89-70 to go 3-0 and book an early ticket for the Quarter-Finals of the U20 European Championship Women in Gdynia, Poland.

Eleven of the 12 Latvian players who stepped on the court scored the ball at least once.

Elina Babkina, as usual, led the way with a game-high 24 points. 

Sweden were paced by Martina Stalvant and Danielle Hamilton-Carter's 12 points a piece.

It was a game of scoring runs for the Latvians.   

Sweden got out to an early 11-6 lead, but a jumper by Anete Steinberga tied it 16-all with over two-and-a-half to play in the first.

After ten minutes, Latvia had a 22-18 advantage. 

The second quarter was defined by two 10-0 runs that the Latvians executed in lightning-fast fashion.

The first came at the start of the period when they exploded for ten points in a mere 1:11 minutes. 

Sweden did not get rattled and chipped the lead down to seven (40-33) on a two-plus-one by Louice Halvarsson.

Latvia then pressed the pedal to the medal and rolled off another ten unanswered points to close the half with a 50-34 advantage.

But Latvia had been saving their best punch for after the break. 

Over the first 6:10 of the third quarter Ainars Cukste's squad outscored the Swedes 19-3 to go up 69-37.

An Ozolina triple with :11 on the clock sent Latvia in to the fourth up 79-43.  

Sweden would make it look respectable by outscoring Latvia 27-10 in the final period when the final result had already been decided.  

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