Belarus Get Past Greece

23 September 2006

A 12-0 run in the fourth quarter helped Belarus hold off Greece 63-60 in Group A.

As a result, both teams have 4-2 records and will have to await on the outcome of Hungary’s contest with Bulgaria to see about their final placement.

With much at stake in regards to the final standings, neither team could take control as the game went back-and-forth in the first half.

Belarus had the largest first half lead at just four as the lead changed six times in the opening 20 minutes of the intense, defensive contest.

Leading 26-25 at the half, Belarus pulled ahead by six (39-33) on free throws Anastasiya Verameyenka midway through the third.

Greece took a 42-39 lead by going on a 9-0 run.

Evanthia Maltsi, who finished with a game-high 30 points, scored five of the nine courtesy of two free throws and a three-pointer.

A three-pointer from Katsiaryna Snytsina just before the third quarter buzzer trimmed Greece’s lead to three, 46-43.

Belarus took control of the game and reclaimed the lead in the fourth thanks to a 12-0 run spanning 3:28.

Tatyana Troina hit free throws to push Belarus ahead 50-49 and a jumper and three-pointer from Snytsina increased the lead to 55-49 with 4:50 remaining in the game.

Greece was able to cut the margin to one three different times over the final 2:19 of the game, but each time Belarus answered back with points to cushion the lead to three.

After a pair of Maltsi free-throws made the score 57-56, Verameyenka made two of her own from the charity stripe to push the lead to 59-59 with 2:01 to go.

Greece made it 59-58 on a jumper from Dimitra Kalentzou, but Snytsina answered with a jumper.

Polymnia Sarekgou then hit a jumper for Greece as the visitors were once again on the brink of taking the lead, trailing 61-60 with 49 seconds.

Belarus’ clutch free-throw shooting continued as Nataliya Trafimava made a pair with 31 seconds to increase to lead to 63-60.

With one final attempt to cut the lead to one or tie, Kalentzou misfired on a jumper with eight seconds remaining.

Verameyenka grabbed the rebound and Belarus ran out the clock to hold on for the victory.

Snytsina scored 22 for Belarus, while Verameyenka added 14 and Trafimava 10.


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