Stankovic Wins Serbian Bronze On Buzzer

25.08.2013

U18 WOMEN

14. Dragana Stankovic (Serbia)
Dragana Stankovic overcame her foul trouble to cause the crowd to erupt with the game-winning shot on the buzzer

Turning Point: It was the most wonderful way to win any game of this magnitude, but also the most cruel way to lose, as standout Serbian center Dragana Stankovic executed a sweet spin-move in the paint to drop an inside score on the buzzer.

Game Heroes: As well as grabbing the game-winning basket, Stankovic had 23 points and 13 rebounds. Ines Corda also kept her team in the game with three huge triples at key moments.

Stats Don't Lie: There was absolutely nothing to choose between the teams, but maybe the real stat was some of the good looks which Netherlands just could not convert and led to 28.4% floor shooting.

There was stomach-churning heartbreak for the Netherlands and unbridled joy for Serbia as Dragana Stankovic sunk a last gasp basket to take her team to a gripping 57-56 success and successive bronze medals at the U18 European Championship Women.

In a game that will live long in the memory for all involved and those lucky enough to have witnessed it, both sets of players dished up an absolute treat.

It was the second thriller in as many days for Serbia who made up for the agony of their narrow semi-final loss to France by landing back-to-back podium finishes.

When the outstanding 19-point Laura Cornelius nailed consecutive three-pointers for Netherlands to give them an early double-digit lead at 32-21, it posed a serious question for their opponents, but Serbia responded.

A 9-0 run helped them to level the scores at 35, with one of the features of the game a terrific duel between Stankovic and her counterpart Emese Hof.

The other pivotal contribution for the winning team came from Ines Corda who again showcased her knack for making big shots from downtown as her team maintained the status quo at 45-45 heading into the last 10 minutes.

With Stankovic picking up fourth foul early, it looked like it might be costly as Netherlands edged 54-50 ahead with just over three minutes left, courtesy of a three-ball by Cornelius.

But, a mammoth triple by Aleksandra Crvendakic cut the gap to 56-55 with less than two minutes to play and with the Netherlands visibly struggling to find the decisive score in the clutch they craved, leaving the door open for Stankovic to deliver the dagger right through the heart of the Dutch.

 


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