Capacity Crowd Helps Push Latvia Past Turkey

By David Hein
Anete Klintsone hit a crucial three-pointer in the final minute as Latvia held off Turkey 64-57 to set up a semi-final showdown with Spain at the U20 European Championship for Women.

Klintsone had 17 points, five rebounds and four assists while Sabine Niedola collected 12 points and nine rebounds in Latvia's victory in Liepaja. Kristine Vitola added 13 points and Liene Priede chipped in 10 points.

Ozge Yavas led Turkey with 13 points but was expelled from the game in the third quarter due to a second unsportsmanlike foul. Damla Gezgin and Tugce Canitez both scored 12 points as Turkey, who will play for 5th-8th place, were eliminated at the quarter-finals for their third straight U20 women's event.

Both teams struggled offensively with Turkey opening a 9-2 lead. But Vitola knocked down two three-pointers to get Latvia going on offense. Still, Turkey led 15-12 after one period.

Trailing 23-22, Latvia went on a 9-0 run which included an unsportsmanlike foul on Yavas. And the hosts went into the break ahead 33-25.

Turkey held Latvia scoreless for more than five minutes to start the second half and used a 10-0 run to grab a 35-33 lead. But Yavas was again charged with an unsportsmanlike foul and was forced to leave the game. And Latvia led 42-40 after three quarters.

Latvia's 6-0 run early in the fourth was bettered by Turkey's 8-0 answer for a 50-48 Turkish advantage. Ieva Krastina nailed a three-pointer with just less than two minutes to play for a 58-52 lead. Gezgin answered with a triple of her own only to see Klintsone throw in the dagger - a three-ball with 21 seconds to play and a 61-57 cushion.

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