Russia Hold Down Slovaks, France Thrash Ukraine

02 July 2009

Russia broke open a close game early in the third quarter and went on to beat Slovakia 82-57.
Last year's finalists led 37-30 at the break and they went on a 13-0 run after the restart to take command for good.

Slovakia went into the last stanza trailing 56-40 and ultimately crashed to a heavy defeat.

Russian center Yulia Poluyanova had a game-high 16 points and pulled down seven rebounds.

"It was very important for us to start the tournament with a win," said Russia's Yulia Stepanova, who contributed 10 points.

"The coach wanted us to win and to play aggressive defense to help our offense.

"I think we did that."

6. Esther Moisan Niamke (France)
Esther Moisan Niamke had 11 points and 7 assists in the French blow out of Ukraine

In the other group game, France demolished Ukraine 97-43.

France forced Ukraine to commit 32 turnovers and there was little Vuktoryia Datsun's side could do with their opponents shooting nine of 18 (50%) from three-point range.

Margaux Okou Zouzouo led France in scoring with 15 points while six other French players finished in double figures.

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