Ukraine, Belarus Survive Relegation Battle

17.07.2009

Ukraine and Belarus retained Division A status after surviving the Classification Round of the U20 European Championship Women 2009 at the expense of the Czech Republic and Montenegro who will spend next year in Division B.

On Friday, Belarus downed the Czech Republic 74-46 in a battle between two 1-1 teams and with classification for Division A on the line.

Maryia Filonchyk, who played with Belarus's U18 team just last week at the U18 European Championship Women in Sweden, led the Belarus attack with 15 points and eight rebounds. 

The seventeen-year had only recently joined her team in time to play their previous game against Montenegro, and it was just in the nick of time.  

With her team down 0-1 and with their backs' against the wall, Filonchyk stepped off the plane and onto the court to score 25 points to get the critical win. 

The Czechs fell behind early 7-1 and trailed the rest of the way even though they did manage to cut the deficit to eight by halftime (37-29).

But in the second half it was all Belarus which just kept extending their advantage till the final whistle.

Montenegro could at least finish the tournament with a 68-63 win over an already classified Ukraine. 

Ukraine had already secured their permanence in Division A with previous wins over Belarus and the Czech Republic. 

Montenegro were led by Snezana Aleksic who scored 21 points and handed out six assists while Milica Jovanovic added 19 points to go with 16 rebounds. 

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