Marinkovic Magic Seals Serbia Win

05 August 2014
15. Anja Marinkovic (Serbia)
Anja Marinkovic's scoring carried Serbia's offence versus Slovakia

Anja Marinkovic capped a stellar 26-point performance with the game-winning three-pointer as Serbia pipped Slovakia with a 73-69 win in classification action at the U16 European Championship Women.

Turning Point: After giving up 43 points in the first half, Serbia turned things around by holding Slovakia to 26 points after the interval. Serbia took the lead with a strong third-quarter display, but both defences clamped down in the final period as the Serbian team was held without a field goal for more than seven minutes. They broke out of the slump in the nick of time, as Marija Stojiljkovic swung the ball around to Marinkovic, who drained the open shot from behind the arc. Nikola Kovacikova's lay-up cruelly bounced out and after the teams traded visits to the free-throw line, Ivana Katanic picked Viktória Havranová's pocket to thwart Slovakia's last attempt.

Game Heroes: Marinkovic was well supported by 13 points from Nevena Naumcev and a mammoth 19 rebounds from Marija Ilic. Kovacikova led Slovakia with 17 points, and Havranová added 14 points, nine rebounds and two blocks. Rebeka Mikulasikova impressed again, battling Ilic hard inside and ending with 13 points, seven rebounds and four blocks.

Stats Don't Lie: Serbia drained 17 of their 22 free throws while Slovakia missed nine of their 15 shots from the charity stripe. Along with their Ilic-inspired edge in rebounding, this allowed Serbia to overcome Slovakia's better shooting from the field during the contest.

The Bottom Line: Serbia will look for a third successive win in Group G when they take on Portugal on Wednesday, while Slovakia take on Denmark.


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