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GB LOSE OUT IN EURO FINAL
- Updated: July 20, 2013
Great Britain’s men lost 83-71 to Poland in their first ever European Championship final at Under-20 level in Pitesti, Romania on Sunday.
Doug Leichner’s side had already secured promotion to Division A by making it to the final.
But their dreams of an unbeaten summer programme were dashed as the Poles spoilt the party behind a dominant second half display.
Devon Van Oostrum led GB once again with 29 points but his team struggled to find their range, shooting just 32 per cent from the field.
Despite that, they trailed by just 44-42 at the half.
But that is when Grzegorz Grochowski and Przemyslaw Karnowski really took over, the former going for 23 points including a dagger three, to stretch the lead to 18 in the fourth quarter while the latter pulled down 16 rebounds to go with 13 points.
The Brits therefore had to settle for second place but their primary objective, promotion, was attained and they will leave Romania safe I the knowledge that they will get another crack at Poland in Division A.
Hungary joined GB and Poland in winning promotion from Division B after they beat Belgium 70-69 in the third-place play-off. (Joe Hewison)
It came after GB defeating Hungary 70-61 on Saturday in Romania in the semis.
Devon van Oostrum had a game-high 22 points for Britain, who were 34-22 ahead in the second quarter before the Hungarians fought back to lead 51-49 headed into the fourth period.
But a 14-0 run demolished their hopes as GB surged clear.
“It wasn’t pretty but we found a way to get the win,” said forward Grant Mackay.
Poland defeated Belgium 57-46 to advance.
GB breezed past the Netherlands 95-57 in their quarter-final.
Devon van Oostrum, continuing his personal tour de force in Romania, had a game-high 34 points, as GB led from start to finish.
“In the beginning it was close, then we established our defence and got some of the looks that we were used to, rebounding, deflections, getting out and running,” said GB coach Doug Leichner. “But to Holland’s credit, they put up a fight and made us really play hard.”
Britain, still unbeaten in the tournament, were 25-17 clear after the opening quarter but stretched their cushion with a 6-0 run that took them 48-29 in front at half-time.
And a further 16-4 burst killed off the Dutch hopes, with John Stewart adding 15 points in a comfortable victory with GB shooting almost 63% from the field.
The Hungarians, who lost 65-60 when they played Leichner’s side in the second round, beat the Swiss 71-64 on Friday evening.
The other semi sees Poland take on Belgium. The top three finishers earn promotion to Division A.