U16 Men defeated by Slovenia surge
England U16 Men lost narrowly to Slovenia for the second time in the European Championship, going down 66-64
With both teams already relegated to Division B for next season, the contest was all for pride and England showed plenty, but fell agonisingly short of a second Division A win.
They started brightly to lead 7-2, but allowed Slovenia to score 6 straight points to turn that around. At the end of one quarter England led 20-16 behind 14 points from Theo Oghide - who would end up with 17.
A quick start to the second period saw England extend their lead to 9 points and only 4 consecutive points from Slovenia to end the half allowed them back within 5 at the break.
A 9-0 run by the Slovenes in the third saw them tie the contest at 39, but England responded with 8 consecutive points of their own to take control once more.
England still led by 7 points going into the final 7 minutes, but another 9-0 run from Slovenia saw England fall behind for good.
England's final possession ended when Jules Christian turned the ball over in the closing seconds allowing Slovenia to escape with a two point win.
Coach Andreas Kapoulas was enthused by his team's performance: "Today it was a tough loss especially considering that we led for most of the game. We played a very good game of basketball but the pressure got to us in the last two minutes of the game.
"We had the opportunity in the last 6 seconds of the game to send it to overtime or win it but unfortunately we were not able to get a shot off. Our energy levels were really high today and I am very proud of how our players responded after the very close game to the Czechs yesterday."
The team will close out their Division A experience on Sunday with a game against Russia.