Lithuania holds on to win the U16 European Championship

2022-08-20T23:18:09+00:00 2022-08-20T23:38:26+00:00.

Giannis Askounis

20/Aug/22 23:18

Following in the footsteps of Jonas Valanciunas is the second gold medal at the U16 level for Lithuania

By Johnny Askounis/

In a challenging situation for the upstarts of both national teams, Lithuania persevered to secure the win, 77-68, versus Spain in the 2022 FIBA U16 European Championship gold medal game held in Skopje Saturday.

Mantas Laurencikas made 8/11 field goals for the team-high 26 points. FC Barcelona’s Kasparas Jakucionis posted a 15-point, 11-rebound double-double plus five assists, five steals, and one block. Nedas Raupelis chipped in 16 more points helping lift his country to the gold medal in the European Championship for the second time. The first triumph dates back to 2008 when Jonas Valanciunas successfully launched his long international career.

Spain was looking for its sixth gold medal and went from a 15-point deficit to shooting distance in the fourth quarter, but the players coached by Tomas Purlys refused to let go of the lead. Unicaja youngster Mario Saint-Supery fired a game-high 31 points in the losing effort and was named MVP of the tournament. Israel’s Ben Saraf, Greece’s Neoklis Avdalas, Lithuania’s Nojus Indrusaitis, and France’s Mohamed Diakite completed the All-Tournament Team.

In the bronze medal game hosted earlier in Sports Centre Boris Trajkovski, France took down Greece, 65-46.

Division A standings:

1. Lithuania
2. Spain
3. France
4. Greece
5. Israel
6. Italy
7. Slovenia
8. Turkey
9. Montenegro
10. Latvia
11. Poland
12. North Macedonia
13. Serbia
14. Croatia (relegated)
15. Netherlands (relegated)
16. Denmark (relegated)

Coming in to replace the relegated teams are Germany, Finland, and Belgium from Division B. Germany rolled Finland, 100-72, in the final of the tournament held in Sofia’s Universiada Hall.

Division B standings:

1. Germany (promoted)
2. Finland (promoted)
3. Belgium (promoted)
4. Bulgaria
5. Iceland
6. Bosnia-Herzegovina
7. Sweden
8. Austria
9. Portugal
10. Great Britain
11. Switzerland
12. Georgia
13. Hungary
14. Ukraine
15. Romania
16. Czech Republic
17. Norway
18. Estonia
19. Slovakia
20. Luxembourg
21. Ireland
22. Cyprus (relegated)

Topping the competition earlier this week in Prizren, Andorra was crowned Division C champion for the fourth time.

Division C standings:

1. Andorra
2. Armenia
3. Albania
4. Kosovo
5. Moldova
6. Malta
7. San Marino
8. Gibraltar