Spain Top Germany In Easter Friendlies

01 April 2013

7. Agusti Sans (Spain)
Agusti Sans led all scorers in the first encounter between the Spanish and German U18 sides

While students around Europe were enjoying their Easter holiday, the young Spanish and German internationals were undergoing a first stage of preparations for their respective U18 European Championships.

The U18 Spanish national team spent Easter Week at training camp in the town of Valdemoro and played host to the U18 German side in two consecutive warm-up games in the space of 24 hours.

On Good Friday, Germany got off to a great start and took an 18-10 lead at the end of the first quarter.

Their hosts however balanced proceedings in the second quarter and went up 31-30 at the half-time buzzer.

Spain made tactical adjustments and tightened the screws on defence in the second half, allowing their guests to score only 11 points in the third and a meagre seven points in the final quarter.

At the same time, Spain were wreaking havoc on the offensive end and rolled to a 72-48 win as a consequence.

Forward Agusti Sans came off the bench and spurred the Spanish comeback as he led all scorers with 20 points.

Sans had missed out on last summer's U18 European Championship but was an integral part of the U16 Spanish national side that took fourth place in 2010 and conquered the bronze medal in the 2011 edition of the continental competition in that age group.

Meanwhile center Daniel Mayr had 12 points for Germany in a losing effort.

On Saturday, the game started in a completely different way as Spain scored the first 12 points in the encounter and took a 22-13 lead at the end of the first quarter, on their way to a comfortable 78-55 victory.

While the hosts led from tip-off to the final buzzer and held a comfortable cushion throughout the game, Germany were visibly improved this time around and avoided the huge drop in performance they had suffered the previous night.

Alberto Abalde and José Ignacio Nogués paved the way for the hosts with 11 points apiece while Juan Alberto Hernangómez had a game-high six rebounds to go with his eight points.

Germany forward Joschka Ferner, who just turned 17 in January, led all scorers with 15 points on 3-for-4 shooting from behind the three-point arc, while Maximilian Ugrai and Konstantin Kovalev had 11 points each in defeat.

Spain are expected to be among the favourites at the U18 European Championship Division A, which tips off on 18 July in Latvia.

'La roja' was drawn in Group C in the First Round, along with Italy, Bulgaria and the hosts.

Germany meanwhile were relegated from the top flight last summer and will try to gain promotion in the Division B tournament, which takes place in F.Y.R. Of Macedonia during the same dates as the Division A championship.

The U18 German side is pitted against Norway, the Netherlands, Austria, Georgia and Estonia in Group B of the First Round.


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