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FIBA Women: Malta wins bronze medal in Macedonia
In the last game of the FIBA Europe Women European Championship of the Small Countries, Malta obtained the second victory against Scotland 72-52 to obtain the third place in the competition after winning the last two editions.
15 July 2012, 12:00am
Malta lost to Austria in the semi-final 61-53 despite a good start in the first quarter. The winners managed to recover well in the remaining sessions especially with a 13-0 run in the start of the second period. In the final game, Malta won the first period 14-10 and managed to maintain the lead till halftime 28-24.
Malta opened strong in the third period thanks to a 20-5 run in the first seven minutes if the quarter to open a 19 point lead 48-29. The last session was a balanced affair with the Maltese holding tight in defence and managed to win the game 72-52. For Malta in their important win, 19-year-old Stephanie De Martino scored 20 points and Rebecca Thoresen added 18.
Christina Grima scored 12 points, grabbed five boards and handed out four assists while Josephine Grima poured in 10 points, pulled down five rebounds and dished out three assists. Ashleigh Vella also excelled for Malta with eight points, 10 rebounds and five assists. Forward Rebecca Thoresen grabbing also an individual award, as she was voted MVP of the tournament.
This was the third consecutive podium finish for the women national team and marked the 10th anniversary of Santino Coppa with this team. Coppa joined the Maltese team in 2002 and managed to obtain 2 gold medals in GSSE, 2 gold medals in the FIBA Europe Division C together with two bronze medals in the same competition (2004 and 2012). Under Coppa's guidance, Malta's women basketball team participated in the Commonwealth Games and the Mediterranean Games..