Bravo Team Israel for claiming your first ever gold at the U20 European Championship 2018!

By: United with Israel Staff

Israel overpowered Croatia on Sunday to take home an historic gold medal at FIBA’s (International Basketball Federation) U20 European Championship 2018, topping the previously undefeated Croatian squad 80-66 at the title clash in Germany.

After opening the tournament with a heartbreaking loss against tournament hosts Germany, the Israeli team won six games in a row to bring home the country’s first-ever gold medal in a FIBA event.

The score was still 47-45 with a couple of minutes played in the third quarter, but a 7-0 run for Israel proved to be the decisive blow from which Croatia never managed to recover.

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Israel’s Yovel Zoosman led the way with 17 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 rebounds. Team captain Gil Beni also had 17 points, while Miron Ruina double-doubled with 14 points, 14 rebounds, 3 steals and a pair of blocks.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with Ariel Beit-Halahmi, the coach of Israel’s National Under-20 Basketball Team, after its historic win.

“To beat France and Croatia sounds like the World Cup. This is a marvelous achievement and we are all proud of you,” Netanyahu said.

“In basketball you have reached very high and I wish you continued success. Congratulations to you and the players! I am waiting to meet you at my office in Jerusalem. Truly, congratulations!” he added.