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Spain go three-in-a-row at the FIBA U20 Women's European Championship

Spain crowned champions of 2017 FIBA U20 Women's European Championship after defeating Slovenia in the final. (Photo: FIBA)

MATOSINHOS, July 17, 2017 - Spain have been crowned 2017 FIBA U20 Women's European champions, defeating Slovenia 73-63 in Sunday's Final.

Not only was it Spain's third-straight gold, but also their sixth at the last seven FIBA U20 Women's European Championships. They were joined on the podium by Russia, who earlier in the evening defeated France 80-59 in the Third-Place Game.

Led by tournament MVP Maria Araujo, who produced a 17-point, 13-rebound double-double in the Final, Spain used their characteristic second-half surge to pull away from a plucky Slovenia, who were appearing in their maiden FIBA U20 Women's European Championship Final.

Araujo was joined on the All-Star team by teammate Maria Conde; Annamaria Prezelj of silver-medalists Slovenia; Russian center Elizaveta Shabanova; and Hungary's Agnes Studer.

At the other end of the spectrum, there was heartbreak for Lithuania, who were relegated to Division B, losing to Netherlands 74-56 in the Classification Game for 13th Place. They will be joined in Division B next year by Turkey and Bosnia and Herzegovina, both of whom learned of their fate a day earlier by losing their Classification Games for 13th to 16th Place.

In 2018, the three demoted teams will be replaced by Germany, Slovak Republic and Croatia, on account of finishing in the top-three positions at the FIBA U20 Women's European Championship Division B, which also concluded on Sunday, from Eilat in Israel.

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