Russia Bounce Back, Sink Slovenia

15 July 2011

U20 European Championship

Day Two of the U20 European Championship saw Russia take their first win in Bilbao, Spain by downing Slovenia 85-66 in Group A of the games.

Russia improved their record to 1-1, while Slovenia fell to 0-2 and will wait for the result between Serbia and Montenegro to learn about their future.

Andrey Zubkov led Russia with 19 points while Nikita Barinov added 17.

Marko Pajic was the top scorer for Slovenia with 18 points and Jan Span added 12 points.

Slovenia enjoyed the better start and took an 8-14 lead after 5:30 minutes, only to see Russia group points and take the upper hand, but Pajic from the foul line made it 21-20 after one quarter.

The two Nikitas - Barinov and Balashov made sure Russia will hold on to the lead at the end of the 1st half with a good finish and a 44-40 gap.

Slovenia struggled to score and saw Barinov make it a 12 point game, 56-44 mid way in the third quarter, and right before the 3rd buzzer the difference jumped to 16.

The gap never fell back to single digits since then, and Russia enjoyed some rest before the deciding day of the group.

Tomorrow Russia will face Montenegro, while Slovenia fight for survival against Serbia.


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