Elitzur Ramle 311.
(photo credit: FIBA Europe website)
Despite only managing a 61-61 tie in the first leg of the Eurocup final in
Israel last week, Elitzur Ramle coach Adan Inbar is confident his team is
capable of beating Arras in the return leg in France on Thursday night to become
the first local women’s side to lift a European title.
throughout the first leg, but came back from 12 points down in the final quarter
to end the game in a deadlock and keep alive its chase of continental glory and
an unprecedented treble.
Ramle has already lifted the State Cup and took
a 1-0 lead in the league playoff semifinals on Monday with an 87-85 victory over
Maccabi Ramat Hen.
“We are facing a game which could define careers,”
Inbar said. “As some of the players have said: ‘This is a once in a lifetime
opportunity’. I’m very excited and I’m not going to be shy about it because you
don’t get to play in the final of a European competition every day.
know all about Arras and I hope we can play the way we know in France and return
to Israel with the cup. We just need to make some final adjustments and calm the
girls and make sure that they are not over-motivated.”
Ramle was clearly
nervous in the first leg and struggled to cope with Arras’ pressure
Le’Coe Willingham (23 points and seven rebounds) and Tanasha
Wright (17 points and 12 rebounds) kept Ramle in the game, with the team missing
its leader Shay Doron for much of the night after the guard suffered an ankle
injury in the first period.
Doron eventually came back to play a key role
in Ramle’s late run and she is optimistic that the team will bounce back from
the disappointing display in the first leg to hand Arras its first home defeat
of the European season after six straight wins.
“We believe that we can
take this title,” said Doron, who sat out Ramle’s win over Ramat Hen to ensure
she could play against Arras.
“We are facing one game we have looked
forward to all season long and we will be ready to realize the dream of bringing
Ramle a European cup.”
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