Sony Athinaikos are 2010 FIBA Europe Eurocup Women Champions

EuroCup Women 2010 Champions: Sony Athinaikos © Sony Athinaikos-FIBA Europe

Sony Athinaikos picked up the trophy for the EuroCup Women despite dropping the second leg (53-57) against Nadezhda Orenburg.

The final game of this season's competition was played in Athinaikos' gymnasium. It only has a capacity for 500 people so a big screen was installed outside the facility for people to follow the game.

The Russians, trailing by 8 points after the first leg, made the better start in this game and led (7-3) after seven minutes of play.

However the introduction of Irene Vizbariene and Ruth Riley for Sony Athinaikos during the closing minutes of the first quarter enabled them to compete with Anastasia Veremeenko from Nadezhda under the boards. The teams finished level (11-11) going into the second quarter.

Candice Wiggins got the home fans on their feet with a trey at the start of the second quarter for the hosts to lead for the first time in the game.

Tatiana Burik replied with a three-pointer for the guests on the next attack.

The teams played cat and mouse for the rest of the quarter with Irena Vizbariene doing most of the scoring for Sony Athinaikos while Monique Currie ran the show for Nadezhda.

Nadezhda went ahead into the locker room (25-22).

Once again Wiggins opened the scoring, this time with a two-point effort. Irena Vizbariene continued to hit the target as the hosts went in front (34-33) with five minutes left to play in the third quarter.

Burik fired in a three-pointer from almost mid-court for Nadezhda to regain the lead. She was to hit the target again, much closer to the basket. Despite Riley bringing the teams level again, Nadezhda went ahead into the final quarter (40-38).

Nadezhda had to step up their game. When Katerina Snytsina hit a shot from beyond the arc with seven minutes left to play, the home fans became less noisy.

Nadezhda just needed 3 points to tie the aggregate score. However the home fans were soon cheering again after Gintare Petronyte and Dimitia Kalentzou hit some free-throws (43-45).

The last five minutes were scrappy with Currie and Veremeenko doing all the offensive work for the guests.

Sony Athinaikos managed to stay in contact with crucial three-pointers by Iouliti Lymoura and Wiggins.

There was the usual drama at the free-throw line with the hosts missing several times before Kalentzou made the pair that saved the series (53-57) with 11 seconds to play.

Veremeenko's three-point attempt fell way short in the dying seconds allowing the hosts to get the ball and hang on for the series' victory.

Sony Athinaikos: Dimitra Kalentzou 9 (8 assists), Iouliti Lymoura 4, Olga Chatzinikolaou 4, Vakina Volonaki 0, Nikole Soulis 0, Gintare Petronyte 2, Polymnia Saregkou 0, Candice Wiggins 10, Zoi Kechagia DNP, Afroditi Kosma 1, Ruth Riley 9, Irena Vizbariene 14.

Nadezhda: Tatiana Dmitrieva 0, Tatiana Burik 11, Katsiaryna Snytsina 5, Olga Ovcharenko 7, Anastasiya Veremeenko 12 (14 rebounds), Sheana Mosch 2, Natalya Myasoedova DNP, Tatyana Troina DNP, Monique Currie 18, Elena Baranova 2

EuroCup Women final first leg goes to Sony Athinaikos

Sony Athinaikos and Nadezhda Orenburg qualify for final

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EuroCup Women Picture credits:

Sony Athinaikos - FIBA Europe

Date created: 08 April 2010

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