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Lithuania women's national basketball team

The Lithuania women's national basketball team (Lithuanian: Lietuvos nacionalinė moterų krepšinio rinktinė) represents Lithuania in international women's basketball competitions. They are regulated by the Lithuanian Basketball Federation, the governing body for basketball in Lithuania.

Lithuania
FIBA ranking29 Steady (1 October 2018)[1]
Joined FIBA1936
FIBA zoneFIBA Europe
National federationLKF
CoachMantas Šernius
Nickname(s)The Second Religion, Game of the Nation
Olympic Games
AppearancesNone
Women's World Cup
Appearances3
MedalsNone
EuroBasket Women
Appearances11
MedalsGold Gold: (1997)
Silver Silver: (1938)
Kit body lithuaniabasides2.png
Home jersey
Kit shorts.png
Team colours
Home
Kit body redyellowsides.png
Away jersey
Kit shorts.png
Team colours
Away

HistoryEdit

 
The very first basketball players in Lithuania were women.
 
Lithuania national team during EuroBasket 1938 in Rome, Italy

Basketball first reached Lithuania when the game was already 30 years old. The version originally played was the German (Dutch) variant, not the North American version invented by James Naismith. The baskets were fastened to the poles without boards, and the game was played in a huge court.[2] One of the Lithuanian sport pioneers, Steponas Garbačiauskas, wrote: "In 1919 Lithuanian women athletes started organizing, but they showed up publicly only in 1920–1921 and started playing basketball."[3] Though women started playing basketball in Lithuania before men did, the first official game was played by men on April 23, 1922, when Lietuvos Fizinio Lavinimo Sąjunga (English: Lithuanian Physical Education Union) played a game against Kaunas. LFLS won the game with a score of 8–6. This day is regarded as the beginning of basketball in Lithuania. The first official women's basketball game in Lithuania took place on September 10, 1922.[4]

The first European women's basketball championship was organized in 1938. It was held in Rome, Italy. The Lithuanian women's squad competed and became European vice-champions. The team's head coach was Feliksas Kriaučiūnas, already well known for his achievements with the Lithuanian men's basketball team.[5]

After World War II, the Soviet Union occupied Lithuania and forced it to play for the Soviet Union women's national basketball team. The best Lithuanian players, playing for the Soviet Union national basketball team, won several titles with it. As members of Soviet Union team, Lithuanians (men and women) in total won 17 Olympic medals (8 gold, 6 silver and 3 bronze), 17 World championship medals (11 gold, 5 silver and one bronze), and 51 EuroBasket medals (36 gold, 4 silver and 11 bronze).[6] The most decorated Lithuanian players during the Soviet era were Angelė Rupšienė, who won the first two women's Olympic basketball golds in 1976 and 1980 and also the 1971, 1975 Women's World Cup, and Vida Beselienė, who got an Olympic gold in 1980 and the 1983 Women's World Cup. Other Lithuanian world champions were Jurate Daktaraitė (1959), Larissa Vinčaitė (1971), and Chamomile Šidlauskaitė (1983).[7]

Yet the occupation left many painful marks in Lithuania and Lithuanians' memories.

 
Jurgita Štreimikytė, former WNBA player, one of the 1997's team leaders.

Lithuania women's national basketball team returned to FIBA games only in EuroBasket 1995 and achieved the 5th place.[8]

The team's biggest success was achieved two years later in EuroBasket 1997 when the national team, coached by Vydas Gedvilas, became the European champions in Budapest. It was the first and the only European title for the Lithuanian women's basketball squad.[9]

A Year later, Lithuania participated in the 1998 FIBA Women's World Cup. Despite successful European competition, Lithuanians lost the quarter-finals game to 1994's World champions, Brazil's national team, 70–72 and had to play for fifth place. There they lost to Spain 59–70 and took only 8th place.[10]

At the EuroBasket Women 1999, Lithuania took 6th place and failed to qualify for the 2000 Summer Olympics, held in Sydney.[11]

In EuroBasket 2001 Women, Lithuanians qualified for four best tournament's teams, though losing the bronze medals game to Spain 74–89. Yet the team qualified for the 2002 FIBA Women's World Cup, held in China.[12]

 
Eglė Šulčiūtė with the national team
 
Gintarė Petronytė with the national squad jersey

At the Women's World Cup, Lithuania played eight matches and won three, against Taiwan, Cuba and Yugoslavia. They took 11th place. As a consequence, Lithuanian Basketball Federation decided to end collaboration with Vydas Gedvilas.[13] In 2003, LKF Executive Committee chose Algirdas Paulauskas as the new Lithuania women's national basketball team coach. He was working previously as an assistant coach in the national team until the 1996 World Championship when he decided to leave the squad due to poor performance.

At EuroBasket Women 2005, held in Turkey, Lithuania, losing their last two matches, to finish in 4th place. Although, they returned to Lithuania with the voucher to the 2006 FIBA Women's World Cup, held in Brazil.[14]

At their third Women's World Cup appearance, the Lithuanians lost the 5th-place game to France and took 6th place, repeating the best performance achieved back in 1998.[15]

At EuroBasket Women 2007, the Lithuanians were crushed in the 5th-place game against Czech Republic with result 54–93 and lost all chances of competing for the ticket to the 2008 Summer Olympics, held in Beijing. Algirdas Paulauskas left the squad for the second time that year.[16]

In 2007, a sculpture dedicated to the Lithuanian basketball was introduced in Vilnius, near the Siemens Arena.[17] It has carved names of Elena Kubiliūnaitė-Garbačiauskienė, Ona Bartkevičiūtė-Butautienė, Jūratė Daktaraitė, Angelė Jankūnaitė-Rupšienė, Vida Šulskytė-Beselienė, Jurgita Štreimikytė-Virbickienė, Lina Dambrauskaitė and Irena Baranauskaitė.

In EuroBasket Women 2009, the Lithuanian women's national team suffered a fiasco, just like the men's squad. The Lithuanian national team took 9th–12th place after not reaching the knockout stage for the first time. After the European championship Algirdas Paulauskas returned to the Lithuanian squad once again.[18]

At EuroBasket Women 2011, the Lithuanians showed signs of hope again, reaching the knockout stage, however there they were eliminated by the French national team 58–66 and took 7th place.[19] Because of that, Lithuania lost all the possibilities to qualify into the 2012 Summer Olympics, held in London. To this day, Lithuania women's national basketball team never participated in the Olympic Games, despite the several appearances in the World championships and successful European championships.

Tough times returned to the Lithuanian squad at EuroBasket Women 2013 where they took only 14th place and were unable to participate in the 2014 FIBA Women's World Cup, held in Turkey.[20] By far, it is the worst performance for the national team.

Lithuania's national team qualified to EuroBasket Women 2015, which was held on 11–28 June in Hungary and Romania, after defeating Great Britain 70–63.[21] The team's main aim was to qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics. They began the journey successfully by taking the 2nd place in the second stage, though in the quarterfinal they were defeated by Belarus 66–68. Lithuania then lost two more matches while playing for 5th-8th place and finished only 8th. That result eliminated the dream of the Lithuania women's national team from competing at the Olympics once again.

Competition recordEdit

EuroBasket WomenEdit

  • European Championship for Women (1938) – 2nd place
  • European Championship for Women (1995) – 5th place
  • European Championship for Women (1997) – 1st place
  • European Championship for Women (1999) – 6th place
  • European Championship for Women (2001) – 4th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2005) – 4th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2007) – 6th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2009) – 9–12th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2011) – 7th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2013) – 14th place
  • EuroBasket Women (2015) – 8th place

FIBA Women's World CupEdit

  • FIBA World Championship for Women (1998) – 6th place
  • FIBA World Championship for Women (2002) – 11th place
  • FIBA World Championship for Women (2006) – 6th place

TeamEdit

Current rosterEdit

The roster for the EuroBasket Women 2019 qualification.

Lithuania women's national basketball team roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Age – Date of birth Height Club Ctr.
SG 6 Nacickaitė, Kamilė 28 – (1989-12-28)28 December 1989 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in) Gernika  
SG 7 Okockytė, Santa 26 – (1992-02-03)3 February 1992 1.76 m (5 ft 9 in) Arka Gdynia  
SG 8 Knyzaitė, Rasa 19 – (1998-12-24)24 December 1998 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in) Vilkmergė Ukmergė  
PG 9 Jurčiūtė, Laurita 20 – (1998-01-08)8 January 1998 1.74 m (5 ft 9 in) ŽKK Budućnost Podgorica  
PF 10 Grigalauskytė, Monika 26 – (1992-02-17)17 February 1992 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in) Galatasaray  
PF 12 Juškaitė, Laura 21 – (1997-09-22)22 September 1997 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in) Gorzów Wielkopolski  
C 13 Petronytė, Gintarė 29 – (1989-03-19)19 March 1989 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in) Mersin BSB  
C 14 Šikšniūtė, Eglė 27 – (1991-05-16)16 May 1991 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in) MBK Ružomberok  
C 15 Šarauskaitė, Daugilė 22 – (1996-09-27)27 September 1996 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in) Energa Toruń  
SF 17 Meškonytė, Gabija 20 – (1998-04-30)30 April 1998 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in) Kibirkštis Vilnius  
C 21 Svarytė, Laura 26 – (1992-10-28)28 October 1992 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in) Energa Toruń  
SG 35 Kvederavičiūtė, Mantė 27 – (1990-11-28)28 November 1990 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in) Rutronik Stars Keltern  

Head coach


Legend:

  • Club – describes last
    club before the tournament

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "FIBA Ranking Presented by Nike". FIBA. 1 October 2018. Retrieved 1 October 2018.
  2. ^ Stanislovas Stonkus "Krepšinio kelias į Lietuvą" (page: 1)
  3. ^ Stanislovas Stonkus "Krepšinio kelias į Lietuvą" (page: 1)
  4. ^ Stanislovas Stonkus "Krepšinio kelias į Lietuvą" (page: 4)
  5. ^ Stanislovas Stonkus "Krepšinio kelias į Lietuvą" (pages: 29–31)
  6. ^ "Krepšinis". Lietuvos sporto enciklopedija. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
  7. ^ Istorija, LKF
  8. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); page: 179
  9. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 182–186
  10. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 187–190
  11. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 190–191
  12. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 192–196
  13. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 198–199
  14. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 200–204
  15. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); page: 187
  16. ^ Algimantas Bertašius and Stanislovas Stonkus "Su Lietuvos vardu per Europą, per pasaulį" (2009 edition); pages: 208–210
  17. ^ "Vilniuje iškilmingai atidengtas paminklas Lietuvos krepšiniui (nuotraukos, video)". lrytas.lt. Retrieved 29 August 2007.
  18. ^ A.Paulauskas viliojamas sugrįžti į moterų rinktinę (in Lithuanian)
  19. ^ Buračas, Rokas. "Ašaros Lodzėje – lietuvės liks be medalių (2 video, foto, komentarai, statistika)". BasketNews.lt. Retrieved 30 June 2011.
  20. ^ Buračas, Rokas. "Lietuvės Europos pirmenybes baigė nuskriausdamos Baltarusiją (komentaras, statistika)". BasketNews.lt. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  21. ^ "Lietuvos moterų rinktinė iškovojo kelialapį į Europos čempionatą (statistika)". BasketNews.lt. Retrieved 25 June 2014.

External linksEdit