Russia Beat Ukraine In U16 Tune-Ups

02.07.2010

Russia swept Ukraine in three friendly games between sides warming up for the U16 European Championship.

From August 5-15, the Russians will compete in Division A in Bar, Montenegro, while Ukraine will fight in the Division B tournament in Tallinn, Estonia.

The first two friendly games in Kiev were very tight affairs, with Russia winning 67-62 and 75-71.

Russia dominated the boards in those contests, 42-26 in the opener and 50-28 in the next.

In the third game, Russia endured a slow start due to Ukraine's intense defensive pressure but ended up pulling away for a 94-72 win.

Ukraine coach Andrey Kharchinskiy talked about his team's early defense in the third game which unfortunately wasn't maintained for the entire 40 minutes.

"That's why I keep saying how important conditioning is," he said.

"If we can keep the high tempo on defense and manage to significantly raise our opponents' heart rate, they  will have hard time making even the open shots.

"We also need to be sure that the subs that check into the game even increase the pace and this is something that did not happen today."

The coach has gradually been cutting players from the squad.

"Yes, we started the preparations with 22 players, continued with 19 and now we've determined the 15 kids that will come back for the second stage," he said.

"We will now have a 10-day break and I would like to have the kids under supervision."

Kharchinskiy is the coach of the BC Kyiv youth team and some of his players are in the under-16 squad.

"I am taking the BC Kyiv players to a sea resort where we'll work on conditioning," he said, "and I'm sure that the Dnipro kids will continue to work in Dnipropetrovsk, but I can't be sure the rest of them won't lose what we'd built here."

Oleg Alferov led the Russians in scoring at 14.3 points per game in the series while Volodymyr Gerun averaged 17.3 points for Ukraine.


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