Local Sport > Basketball > ANDORRA BEAT MALTA IN FINAL

ANDORRA BEAT MALTA IN FINAL

Andorra won the 14th FIBA European Championship for Small Countries after beating a strong Maltese side 66-63 in Saturday’s final.

A wonderful run in the third quarter was not enough for Malta as Andorra opened very strong in the last period.

For Malta however this was the best result ever in the competition after two bronze medals in 2010 and 2012 and the third consecutive medal.

Malta opened a five point lead by the fifth minute of the first quarter 12-7 but Andorra recovered thanks to Xavier Galera’s three pointers and they closed the session ahead 20-19.

In the second quarter, Michael Naudi and Darryl Jackson gave the lead to Malta but Andorra replied again this time from Rafael Casals who gave them a six point advantage 34-28. Andorra maintained the same distance till halftime 41-34.

The third quarter opened with another Galera trey for a 10 point lead for Andorra 41-34.

Here there was a strong reaction from the Maltese side with a strong 13-2 run with a Jackson trey and baskets from Samuel Deguara, Omar Said and Tevin Falzon.

Falzon gave the lead to Malta with a basket in the start of the seventh minute 48-46. Colom levelled the teams again before a Said three pointer in the last 31 second which saw Malta starting the final period 3 points ahead 51-48.

In the first minutes of the last session Andorra made a decisive 9-0 run to go six points ahead 57-51.

The Maltese players fought hard to get closer to the winners but despite the points from Jackson, Falzon and Deguara Andorra remained in control to win their second consecutive title 66-63.

Jackson netted 19 points for Malta together with 11 from Falzon and Deguara.

At the end of the competition, Jackson and Deguara were both nominated in the tournaments top five after ending the best scorers with an average of 22.8 and 18.8 points per game respectively.

Samuel Deguara who won the fair play award, also ended as the best rebounder with 15.0 rebounds per game and Steve Schembri was the second best assist man with 2.5 assists per game.

Finally, Darryl Jackson also won the tournament’s MVP which is selected by the coaches of all national teams.
 
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