Montenegro to Face Croatia for Final Olympic Qualifying Tournament Slot

After failing to advance to the semifinals, Montenegro bounced back with a 68-59 win over Lithuania to arrange a duel with Croatia for the last spot for next year’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

Iva Perovanovic, who was limited to nine points in the quarter-final loss against France on Thursday, found her usual form as she finished with 18 points and five rebounds, helping her team ease the pain of their heart-breaking loss against the defending champions, which is their lone defeat in the tournament.

Ana De Forge also had a share of the spotlight, finishing with 17 points on 6-for-12 clip from the field and 2-for-3 shooting from beyond-the-arc. Jelena Dubljevic had 14 points, while Jelena Skerovic had a productive night, racking up 13 points, seven steals, six rebounds, and four assists.

The game was a close contest in the first half that ended with the teams tied at 29 at the half, but Lithuania pulled away in the third period and built an eight-point lead heading into the final period. However, Montenegro got into the groove in final period, outscoring the Lithuanians, 23-6, in the final ten minutes to escape with a come-from-behind victory.

Sandra Linkeviciene had 15 points and 10 rebounds, while Egle Sulciute and Ausra Bimbaite added nine and seven points, respectively, but it was not enough to carry Lithuania, who will Latvia for the seventh and eighth spot.

The Lithuania – Latvia encounter will be on Saturday in Lodz, which will be followed by the fifth-place battle between Montenegro and Croatia.

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