Semi-Final Preview: France vs. Sweden


U18 Women

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11. Margaux Galliou (France)
Margaux Galliou is the top French scorer with 8.9 points per game, but she is by no means the only offensive weapon as all the players share the burden almost equally

Preview by Adrian Popa  

The two teams are coming into this semi-final in quite different states of mind.

On one side there is France, who cruised to victory against Poland in the quarter-finals, 81-54, and on the other side Sweden is coming from a heroic win in front of Serbia, 66-65.

France, still undefeated at the Global Vision U18 European Championship Women, are the favorites, but Sweden will be a tough underdog.

The Swedish offense is the second best in this tournament, with 68.4 points per game, behind only Spain.

The control tower Amanda Zahui stands tall with her 16.4 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.6 blocks to lead her team in those statistical categories.

But she and her teammates will face the stifling defense of the French, allowing the opponents only 47.7 points per game, second behind the same Spanish team.

Both teams are in the top ten in rebounds, with a slight advantage for Sweden, 42.9 boards on average, to 41.7 of Les Bleues.

France is a threat from outside, and leads this statistical category with 38.4 percent three-point shooting.

Meanwhile, Sweden have almost double the attempts of France from beyond the arc, but with only 26.4 percent of success.

The French trademark in this championship is the team-oriented offense, with no player scoring more than 8.9 points per game, which is the average of scoring leader Margaux Galliou.

Instead, almost all French players are potential offensive threats and none of them has spent more than 20.1 minutes on average on the basketball court.

The biggest French threat from outside is Esther Moisan Niamke, who has a brilliant 50.0 percent on 11-from-22 shooting.


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