- National Teams
England under-16’s began their Division A campaign at the European Championships with a 61-56 defeat against Germany in Lithuania on Thursday.
Alan Keane’s side led by a point with a minute to go but Germany secured the win with the final six points.
Nelson Boachie-Yiadom top scored with 16 points including 3/4 from 3-point range while Jacob Iwowo contributed an all-round effort of 11 points, 8 rebounds and four assists. Josh Edwards also finished with 11 points.
After Germany opened the scoring, Boachie-Yiadom and Iwowo both netted from downtown in a 10-2 run to give England an early cushion.
However, Germany closed the quarter with a 9-0 run to build a slender 15-14 advantage at the end of the first.
The lead changed hands in the early stages of the second before Edwards scored five points in quick succession followed by a triple from Jacob Round as England took a 28-26 lead into half-time.
Boachie-Yiadom scored another 3-pointer to open the third but Germany controlled the quarter with a 12-2 run as they turned a five-point deficit into a five-point lead.
Edwards struck from deep to cut the gap to two points but another basket saw Germany move 42-38 ahead at the end of the third.
England made a fast start to the fourth with Round setting the tone with an early triple to start an 8-0 run to take the lead.
A tense finale ensued as the lead came and went for England before a 5-0 mini-burst put them up two at 53-51 nearing the final two minutes.
Consecutive baskets for Germany swayed the momentum once more before Boachie-Yiadom made it 56-55 in England’s favour with a minute left on the clock with his third three of the game.
Germany answered straight back with an immediate reply from downtown and they were able to seal the win from the free throw line as England failed to score in the crucial closing moments of the game.
A promising start nonetheless for England and with Russia’s suspension in place, their next game becomes even more important.
The under-16’s return to action with a game against Turkey tomorrow at 2:45pm (UK time).