Italy Runaway Train Into Semi-Finals



In-form Italy made an easy job of Sweden in the Quarter-Finals of the U18 European Championship Women 2010 in Slovakia to set up a semi-final meeting with France.

Italy scored 25 fastbreaks points as opposed to Sweden's two.

Sweden also suffered from a abysmal 5.5 percentage three-point shooting percentage.

Beatrice Carta led Italy with 11 points and Lucia Morsiani added 10 while Alice Nyström scored 10 for Sweden.

Morsiani put Italy on the scoreboard with a fastbreak layup and with their fast backcourt the Azzure pushed the tempo to go up 17-6. Italy continued to show a team oriented basketball with seven players making at least one basket in the first ten minutes.

Coach Fredrik Jolilamo tried to match Italy with a smaller lineup to give his team more speed and this move paid off with a 6-0 run that reduced the arrears to 18-14. Italy responded with full-court pressing and restored a double digit lead (32-20) with two minutes left in the second quarter.

Italy started the second half with a triple by Marta Masoni and Francesca Dotto's coast-to-coast layup that pulled the Azzures up 39-24 while Sweden couldn't pick up their game and went scoreless for seven minutes until Alice Nyström made a layup.

Italy kept their defensive pressure and forced Sweden to a shot clock violation three times in the third quarter.

Even with Zahui back on the court in the fourth quarter Sweden stayed out of tune and when Irene Cigliani nailed a trey that extended the margin to 30 points with 2:41 to go in the regulation there was no question who was going to be the winner.


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