Lithuania at Rio Olympics: Day 10
Lithuanian athletes continue their bumpy road to medals in Rio Olympics. The basketball team lost its second game in a row, but advanced to the quarter-finals, as did a Lithuanian cyclist. The country will also be represented in the women’s discus throw finals.
Lithuanian athlete Zinaida Sendriūtė (31) will be among the 12 finalists of women's discus throw finals after claiming the 11th spot in the qualifications. The Lithuanian threw the discus 60.79 meters.
After her defeat in the second round, Simona Krupeckaitė (33) competed in the Repechage race and won it after finishing the 200m distance in 11.614 seconds with a speed of 61.994km/h. Krupeckaitė is now moving on to quarter-finals where she will race against British cyclist Katy Marchant (23).
Krupeckaitė is in a must win situation if she wants to advance to the semifinals.
After the unexpected and painful loss to Spain, the Lithuanian basketball team faced Croatia for its last match in the group stage.
Lithuania started the match well, but the Croatians managed to overcome the Lithuanian defence time after time, and after a long and tough battle, Lithuania surrendered with a score of 90-81.
Lithuania opened the match in a very positive way with a good offensive game and solid defence. Mantas Kalnietis led Lithuania to a victory in the first quarter with 21-13. Croatia woke up in the second quarter and eliminated the Lithuanian defence strategy when they scored 34 points to the Lithuanian basket while allowing the Lithuanians to score only 20. After the first 20 minutes of the game, Croatia had a lead 47-41.
The second half began with a dominant performance of the Croatian players when they stopped the Lithuanian offence on 14 points only, while their own scoring 28 and increasing their lead to 21 points.
After the break and a few tough words from coach Jonas Kazlauskas, the Lithuanian players began to play the basketball that they played during the first three matches in the group stage. The Lithuanians allowed their rivals to score 15 points only and with a good performance on the offensive side, scored 26. By the end of the game, Lithuania’s players had narrowed the gap to -8, but failed to win the match.
Mantas Kalnietis was the dominant player in the Lithuanian team spending 40 minutes on the floor and finishing with a double-double - 26 points and 11 assists. Paulius Jankūnas added 18 points in 30 minutes and Jonas Valančiūnas scored 13 and grabbed six rebounds during his 32 minutes on the floor.
It was the Lithuanians' second defeat in a row and they finished third in group B, while Croatia with three victories and two loses, but with a better point deference, took the first place and will face Serbia in the quarterfinals.
Spain, which butchered Lithuania in the match last week, lost the first two games in the group, but took the second place after beating Argentina 92-73.
Argentina, the last team to advance to the quarterfinals from Group B, will face team USA that won all its games in group A.
Lithuania's rivals in the quarterfinals will be the Australians who won four games and lost only to the Americans. On the paper, it is the best choice among the teams that advanced to the quarterfinals from group A (USA, Australia, France and Serbia). However, the Australian team is a dangerous one that managed to beat the European champions, France, with a score of 87-66 and won against the world's vice champions from Serbia 95-80.