Hosts France crowned U16 Women’s European champions to end 10-year title drought
France v Hungary, 2017 FIBA U16 Women’s European Championship Division A (FRA), Bourges – Palais des Sports du Prado(FRA), Final, 12 August 2017
BOURGES, France (FIBA U16 Women’s European Championship 2017) – Tournament hosts France were crowned FIBA U16 Women’s European champions after defeating Hungary 63-55 in Saturday’s Final in Bourges.
With the win, the French ended a decade-long drought as their last title in the competition dated back to 2007. For Hungary, the second-place finish matches their best-ever result, previously achieved in the event’s inaugural edition in 1976.
The Hungarians led 22-10 midway through the second quarter but France fought back and, spurred on by the partisan fans in Le Prado, went on a 16-2 run to head into the locker room up 26-24 at halftime. It shifted the game’s momentum in their favor for good as they stretched their lead into double digits over the course of the third quarter before staving off a late rally by Hungary in the final frame.
Zoe Wadoux and Iliana Rupert led the way for France, with the former scoring a game-high 22 points, while Rupert had a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds. Reka Dombai had 16 points in Hungary’s losing cause.
Rupert was rewarded for her fine performances throughout the tournament, landing the MVP accolade to complement her winner’s gold medal. She was joined in the All-Star Five by teammate Wadoux, Hungary’s Dombai, with Italy’s Ilaria Panzera and Emily Bessoir of Germany rounding out the prestigious lineup.
Earlier, Italy overcame Latvia to deny them a first-ever medal in the competition and secured the last step on the podium for themselves thanks to a hard-fought 48-42 win in the 3rd Place Game. It is the second time in three years that…