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Serbia outplays Netherlands, claims FIBA 3x3 World Cup title for third straight year

BOCAUE, Bulacan - For the third straight year, Serbia is the king of 3x3 basketball.

Team Serbia capped off their amazing run in the 2018 FIBA 3x3 World Cup, defeating team Netherlands in the championship game, 16-13, on Tuesday night at the Philippine Arena.

Dusan Bulut scored seven points to lead the Serbian team followed by stellar efforts from Stefan Stojačić who had four points, Marko Savić's three points, and two points from Dejan Majstorovic.

Tuesday's championship was a rematch of last year's finals where Serbia edged Netherlands, 21-18. This time however, the finals featured a slower pace and low scoring.

But Serbians were able to finally get their rhythm in the last two minutes. The score was tied 10-10 after a basket by Netherlands' Dimeo Van Der Horst. Stojačić answered right back with a long two to break the deadlock. From then on, Serbia displayed their championship pedigree.

An and-1 play from Savić with 1:07 created the separation his team needed, placing a 15-11 for Serbia. The defending champions never looked back and sealed the win. Jesper Jobse had six points in a losing effort for Netherlands

This is the third straight 3x3 title for Serbia and fourth overall, winning their first in 2012.

Slovenia bagged the bronze medal after defeating Poland, 21-16, in the battle for third place. Gašper Ovnik powered the second-seed with 10 points followed by seven points from Simon Finzar. Slovenia failed to make it into the championship round when they lost to Netherlands in the semis.

Michael Hicks tried to muster the offense for Poland with nine points. It was a pair of tough losses for the Polish. They were two points away from getting into the finals but Serbia's Majstorovic crushed them with the semis game-winner.