Recapping FIBA U16 European Championships – Division B

Germany outlasts host Montenegro for Gold:

Germany’s path to the Division B finals was nothing short of dominant. Their 65-57 victory over emboldened host nation Montenegro was by far the closest game they fought through during the entire tournament. Even with the talented Montenegrin backcourt asserting themselves, the German’s average margin of victory equalled a massive 46.6 points per game.

Within their opening three games of the event, the German offense had secured victories by scores of 88-16 and 131-26 against Luxembourg and Norway respectively. The team’s success allowed for their entire rotation to see the floor in preparation for the knockout rounds.

The German’s balanced scoring attack and full weight of the team once again won the day in the Gold-medal match. Behind Clara Bielefeld’s 13 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and a block, the wing’s overall impact set the tone sustaining multiple Montenegrin runs for one final victory.

Sweden beats Estonia for Bronze:

Sweden’s perseverance shined through following a 20-point drumming at the hands of eventual champions Germany in the semi-final round. Re-grouping ahead of their final game against Estonia, the Swedes turned in a much more coherent performance. Following a 2-point halftime deficit, an explosive 3rd-quarter flipped the odds in their favor and granted a 9-point advantage heading into the final frame.

Despite Estonia finishing +18 in attempts at the free throw line, the Swedes held a +9 advantage on the glass converting extra opportunities both inside the paint and from the perimeter. Estonia’s inability to efficiently close the gap in the 4th-quarter sealed their fate in the 61-52 loss and hopes of securing the final promotion spot slipped through their hands.

Paunksnyte’s stellar play not enough to pull Lithuania into a deep run:

Proving to be one of the standout European players to attend the inaugural Adidas Eurocamp event this summer, Lithuanian guard Daniele Paunksnyte tallied 9.0 points, 1.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.0 steal per game against some of the best younger players in the world. Her consistency from game to game stood out in a big way adjusting to matchups and various opponent playing styles. As was the case for many of the event’s alumni playing in FIBA tournaments following that camp, Paunksnyte’s play at the Division B U16 European Championships was nothing short of entertaining.

Averaging 14.9 points, 5.9 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 2.1 steals per game, her reliability was never in question for a Lithuania team that typically fairs better than 7th. Turning in a trio of top-30 scoring performances, including the top-2 of the tournament and the only 30-ball of the entire event, Paunksnyte efficiently scored 40+ from the field and the perimeter. Her development will be something to monitor in upcoming years with the likelihood of upholding the proud pipeline of guards emerging out of the country.

Younger Etute replicating older sister’s successes:

The Etute family name is generating a lot of buzz this summer. Following strong performances at the inaugural Adidas Eurocamp, ’23 Faith Isi Etute averaged an absurd 31.5 points, 23.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 6.2 steals and 1.0 block per game at the FIBA U18 Division B European Championships. Included in that run of historic performances were a 40-point, 33-rebound masterclass followed by a 48-point, 24-rebound outing in the quarter-finals.

Younger sister Joyce Isi Etute, class of ’26 and three years her junior, found similar success relative to her competitors in the Division B U16 European Championships. Tracking along a mirrored developmental pathway to her sister, Joyce turned in a trio of top-30 scoring performances including one of of 5, 25+ point outings in the tournament.

She topped that dominance with 5 of the best rebounding games of the tournament, including the top-3 overall and a pair of 20/20 games. Comparison to her older sister’s U16 track-record shows the future remains bright for the 15 year-old:

Faith Isi Etute (age)PtsRebAstStlBlkEff
’21 European Challengers (16)
’19 European Championships – Division B (14)
Faith Isi Etute’s U16 Overall Performances
Joyce Isi Etute (age)PtsRebAstStlBlkEff
’23 European Championships – Division B (15)15.818.
’22 European Championships – Division B (14)
Joyce Isi Etute’s U16 Overall Performances

Top Bigs:

🇦🇹Chirstina Elisabeth Koeppel, ’25

🇱🇺Joyce Isi Etute, ’26

🇩🇪Lilli Schultze, ’26

Top Wings:

🇩🇪Clara Bielefeld, ’25

🇨🇭Grace Adeyanju, ’25

🇳🇱Mia-Elle Lieverst, ’27

🇸🇰Tamara Mandelikova, ’25

Top Guards:

🇱🇹Daniele Paunksnyte, ’25

🇲🇪Janja Dragisic, ’25

🇲🇪Kseniya Nisavic, ’26

🇷🇴Ioana Savu, ’25

** Full player evaluations are available for the event via @SBProspects Scouting Service

Promoted Teams to Division A: Germany, Montenegro and Sweden

Relegated Teams to Division B: Czech Republic, Portugal and Turkey

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