Division B Round-Up: And Then They Were Eight

27.07.2009

Host nation Bosnia and Herzegovina edged out Hungary to stay undefeated and take top honours in Group A of the Preliminary Round at the U18 European Championship Men 2009 Division B, in Sarajevo.

The home side raced out to a 28-15 lead but the Hungarians fought back and were within one, 72-71, on Zsolt Lakosa's free-throws with 36 seconds left in the game. But Josip Gunjaca and Nermin Buza made some foul shots of their own to close out the game. 

Bosnia and Herzegovina will face Poland in the opening game of the Qualifying Round on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Estonia needed overtime to see off Norway 74-71 and finish second in the group. The Norwegians led by as many as 16 points but the Baltic state made a late comeback and even had a chance to win in regulation, leading by five, 63-58, on Rain Veideman's pair of free-throws with just over a minute of normal time left.

Norway scored the last five points to force overtime where Martin Dorbek made crucial baskets to cap off an impressive comeback for Estonia.

Denmark beat Belarus 81-71 behind Thomas Laerke's 34 points and both teams - along with Norway - will play in the classification games.

In Group B, Sweden remained unbeaten with an 81-69 defeat of Poland.  Christopher Czerapowics scored a game-high 21 points as the Scandinavian nation booked their place in the next round. Despite the loss -their first in the tournament - Poland also advanced. Five players scored in double figures as Finland beat the Slovak Republic 83-57 to finish with a 2-2 record leaving the Slovakians without a win in four attempts.

Nemanja Radovic scored 28 points as Montenegro overcame Georgia 85-74 despite Akaki Dvalishvili's 33 points and 12 rebounds. The win saw the Montenegrins become one of only four teams to finish the Preliminary Round with an unbeaten record.

The Netherlands, who were already guaranteed second place in the group, finished the opening stages with an 83-72 win over Romania, who dropped their fourth game in a row.

Finally, England topped Group D by beating Portugal 88-79. Joshua Houghton had a team-high 31 point as Andre Alleyne's side used a strong second quarter to pull away and, despite a late comeback by the Portuguese - with Carlos Ferreinho breaking out for a game-high 32 points - they held on to maintain their 100% record (4-0).

Belgium jumped out to an early double-digit lead against Austria, but the Central European country fought back in the middle quarters before running out of steam in the final quarter for a 70-61 defeat.


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Sweden Capture Division B Title03.08.2009
Sweden, Poland Reach Final And Division A02.08.2009
Division B Round-Up: Semi-Final Pairs Decided31.07.2009
Division B Round-Up: Sweden, Stay Perfect29.07.2009

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