Serbia Put On A Show To Reach Semis

17.07.2008

Serbia finally played like the favourites everyone expected in thrashing Turkey 87-58 to advance to the semi-finals of the U20 European Championship for Women.

The 2007 runners-up decided the game in the third quarter and forced 23 total Turkey turnovers. Four Serbian starters scored in double figures in improving to 4-1 in the Qualifying Round Group E in Chieti.

Dragana Gobeljic led the way with 14 points, Sonja Petrovic had 13, Maja Miljkovic scored 12 and Jelena Cerina added 10 points for Serbia. The fifth starter Jelena Milovanovic chipped in nine points

Turkey, which saw Serbia blow the game open with a 35-8 third period, were paced by 16 points by each Bahar Caglar and Melek Bilge. Gizem Yacvuz added 13 points and Yasemin Dalgalar chipped in 11 in a losing effort.  

Gobeljic knocked down the first three-pointer of the game as Serbia opened the first cushion at 7-2. It was 8-3 but the Serb offence stalled and Bilge scored six points over the course of the first period to guide a 9-2 run for a 12-10 Turkey lead.

Dalgalar's lay-up made it 14-10 to start the second period. But then it was the Turkish offence which struggled, turning the ball over five times in a six minute stretch as Serbia used an 11-0 run to surge ahead 21-14. And Miljkovic knocked down two three-pointers in the process of Serbia pushing the lead to 33-22 at the break.

Jovica Antonic's team forced seven more turnovers in Turkey's first eight possessions of the second half as his team finally showed their favourite status. Serbia started the third period on a 22-4 run and the lead grew to 68-30 after three periods as they knocked down five three-pointers in the quarter.

Caglar and Dalgalar combined for the first eight points of the fourth for a 68-38 deficit as Turkey fought to make the result more respectable. But the Serb reserves would not let the Turks get any closer until Caglar's final basket of the game.


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