Russia En Route To Second Round

05 July 2014
10. Olga Novikova (Russia)
Olga Novikova confirmed a spot in the second round on Saturday night

Russia rounded off their U20 European Championship Women first round in fine style, easing to a 65-52 victory over Czech Republic in Udine on Saturday.

Turning Point: Russia led since the opening exchanges but a 9-2 run off-the-back of three triples from Polina Sych, Alexandra Marchenkova and Daria Levchenko allowed them to close the first period having broken the Czechs' initial resistance.

Game Hero: Albina Razheva produced the type of dominant performance she had been threatening since day one of the competition. She scored 19 points off 67% field goal shooting and reeled in a useful eight rebounds to help Russia keep their opponents at arm's length.

Stats Don't Lie: Czech Republic did not make too many offensive mistakes in terms of turning the ball over before getting a shot off. But they struggled to make so many of their shots count that it was impossible for them to keep up with Russia. The Czechs finished with a field goal percentage of just 25%.

The Bottom Line: Russia go through to the second round fresh from two straight wins and seem to be heading in the right direction. Czech Republic will join them but have work to do to address the problems that have seen them lose twice in two days.



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