|William Howard and France finished on a high by grabbing 9th place courtesy of a win over Slovenia|
France scored the last 11 points in the game on Sunday to beat Slovenia 78-69 and finish in ninth spot at the Spotland U20 European Championship, in Tallinn.
Slovenia edged ahead 69-67 on a Luka Rupnik and-one play 3:41 from the final buzzer, but wasted all their possession from then on, either by turning the ball over or misfiring on not particularly well-taken shots.
France meanwhile took the ball inside on the other end of the floor and Mouhammadou Jaiteh scored from the low post, before dishing out an excellent assist to William Howard on the next possession, and Les Bleus went up 71-69.
After another missed shot by Slovenia, Boris Dallo split the Slovenian defence, scored on a lay-up and was fouled, converting the free throw to convert an and-one play that brought France up 74-69 with just 58 seconds remaining.
Slovenia committed only two more turnovers than France but Les Bleus capitalized on them to perfection, scoring 21 points; France also got 32 points from players who came off the bench, while Slovenia got none.
Howard hit 7 of his 14 shots from the floor and finished with 19 points for France, Jaiteh had 16 points and eight rebounds and Dallo added 14 poitns.
For Slovenia, Lapornik had 19 points while Tomaz Bolcina collected a 14-point, 19-rebound double-double in losing efforts.