France Prevail In Overtime Thriller

31 July 2012

11. Emilie GOMIS (France)
France's Emilie Gomis led all scorers with 22 points.

France prevailed 74-70 in overtime against Australia on Monday in the most dramatic game of the Olympic women's basketball tournament so far.

Belinda Snell forced the extra period with a desperation heave from beyond half-court, a shot that drew rapturous applause from a neutral Basketball Arena crowd.

Isabelle Yacoubou had a chance to seal victory with just over three seconds remaining but made only one of two free-throws.

Australia rebounded and Snell caught a pass from Abby Bishop, took one dribble and launched a shot that banked in.

France kept their composure, though, and especially Yacoubou who made several key plays in the extra period.

Yaboubou finished with 10 points and seven rebounds.

Emilie Gomis, who injured her calf in training after the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament for Women and almost missed the London Games, didn't score in the first half but caught fire in the third quarter when she scored 16 of her game-high 22 points to put France on top.

Turkey had earlier in the day won their all-European battle against the Czech Republic, 61-57.

Tugba Palazoglu, Nevriye Yilmaz and Bahar Caglar each had 11 points.

The victory was Turkey's second in a row while the Czechs slumped to 0-2.

Croatia became the same European scalp for surprising China, who had beaten the Czechs in their first game.

After the first game of the day, Croatia coach Stipe Bralic said: "We had no energy. We had never played at 9 am before."

Croatia are 0-2 but certainly won't give up on their hopes of reaching the Quarter-Finals.

They had a losing start at last year's EuroBasket Women but rebounded to finish fifth and claim a spot at the Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

"It's not the same to play at the Olympics as the European Championship," Croatia playmaker Iva Ciglar said.

"It's not easy but for sure we are not going to give up. We are going to continue to fight."

Russia overcame the stiff challenge of Brazil, winning 69-59.

Sparta&K M. R. Vidnoje's Evgenia Beliakova led Russia with 14 points as the Russians improved to 2-0.

Great Britain appeared to be on the cusp of their first victory in front of their home fans with a 61-57 lead over Canada but lost 73-65.

Johannah Leedham and Natalie Stafford scored 15 points apiece in defeat.


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