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D-II girls final

AOSR reigns over Europe after gritty win

By AARON KNOWLES | STARS AND STRIPES Published: February 23, 2019

WIESBADEN, Germany – It won’t be remembered as a display of offensive firepower.

But the American Overseas School of Rome Falcons are OK with that after emerging with a 20-15 victory over AFNORTH on Saturday in the DODEA-Europe Division II girls basketball championship game.

The end of the first quarter was tied at 4-4. AOSR was up at halftime 8-7. AFNORTH didn’t score at all in the third period and trailed 12-7 entering the final one. So when the teams matched relatively robust outpourings of eight points apiece in the final quarter, the Falcons emerged with their first girls title in recent memory.

Part of the low scoring was due to diligence.

“Last night, we all stayed up until around 10 p.m. and our coach analyzed everything we did and AFNORTH did, and we increased everything we needed to do,” AOSR’s Amaya Vaquerizo said. “We had to adjust our defense during this game.”

Torri Morris led second-seeded AFNORTH’s fourth-quarter charge, but it was too little, too late for the Lions.

“First, I would like to say congrats to AOSR and they played a really good game and unfortunately we missed some chances to do some of the things that got us here,” AFNORTH coach Matt Wise said. “This just didn’t come out the way we planned.”

The Falcons, third-seeded despite having the most victories against D-II opponents during the regular season, have plenty to celebrate on their long trip back to Rome.

“This game was really intense for us and we had a lot of anxiety throughout it, but it went really well,” Vaquerizo said. “This feels really good, because it is the first time for our school in a very long time, so we feel like we made history.”

Knowles.Aaron@stripes.com

Twitter: @AKStripes

Players go up for a rebound during the Division II basketball championship game between AFNORTH and AOSR at Clay Kaserne Fitness Center, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019. AOSR won the game 20-15.
BRIAN FERGUSON/STARS AND STRIPES

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