- National Teams
England Under-16s had a dominant fourth quarter performance to seal a tournament opening win over Romania, 85-76, on Thursday at the Division B European Championships in Sarajevo.
Trailing 56-48 heading into the fourth, head coach Andreas Kapoulas’ side had a 37 point final period to emerge victory and secure the crucial opening day victory.
A key series of plays in the final three minutes sealed it for coach Andreas Kapoulas. With the scores level at 67, Aidan Gastaldi-Davies sunk a three only for Romania’s Tamas Boloni to reply from outside the arc on the next possession. Gastaldi-Davies wasn’t finished, draining another triple on England’s return up-court and then he stole a Romanian pass, was promptly fouled and sent to the free throw line for a pair. He sunk them both, giving England a 75-70 lead, as he scored 8 points in 40 seconds of play.
Although England never lost the lead, they were made to fight all the way as Luke Mitchell scored five points and a fastbreak dunk by Josh Steel (off a Mitchell assist) sealed the deal.
Akwasi Yeboah led England’s scoring with 21 points and he was joined in double figures by Gastaldi-Davies (16), Steel (15) and Mitchell (12).
Thursday’s game was the first of four straight as they play Switzerland tomorrow, then Ireland and finally Slovenia to complete the first round. The top two in each group advance to the 1st-8th classification games while the remainder play for 9th-22nd.
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