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  • Writer's pictureMāris Noviks

Connected to the world: welcome Neptūnas Klaipeda!

Disclaimer: original article was published on September 21, 2022.

Neptūnas Klaipeda is the third club from Lithuania, which will play in the European Women`s Basketball league.

Kibirkštis Vilnius has played at the EWBL since league`s inception in 2015.

The Sparks reached the playoffs four times (2017, 2018, 2021, 2022) and earned their first Final Four apperance in 2022.

Gitautas Kievinas team won the bronze medal after a 87-69 success over SBŠ Ostrava.

Hoptrans Sirenos made its lone apperance at 2017-2018.

Kaunas team, coached by Mantas Šernius, qualified for the postseason and won its first playoff game against Horizont Minsk 83-81.

Sirenos suffered a 54-62 defeat at Minsk and lost the series with an aggregate score of 137-143.

Neptūnas has emerged as a Top 3 team in Lithuania, recently.

Klaipeda reached the Lithuanian finals in 2021 and 2022.

Neptūnas finished the 2021 regular season in the third place behind the Aistes LSMU but won the semifinal series against the Kaunas team 2-0.

Next year both teams split the season series but Neptūnas prevailed in the semifinal series again 2-1.

Neptūnas finished third at the Neodenta Queen`s Cup and earned the first bronze medal at the Women`s Baltic Basketball league.

Klaipeda lost the semifinal duel against Kibirkštis Vilnius 64-57 but edged out RSU the next day 72-68.

Dalia Donskichytė and Savannah Plentovich formed a dynamic backcourt duo, while player-coach Andra Gabalytė provided a reliable back-up.

Donskichytė and Agne Černeckytė stayed in the port city, while Plentovich accepted offer from the Swedish club Uppsala Basket.

Brazilian forward Maisa Pereira joined forces with her sister Maiara – both will play for another Klaipeda team “LCC International University”.

LCC – or Moose Basketball – is coached by the European U18 champion Vilius Stanisauskas and a EuroBasket Women 1997 champion Lina Brazdeikytė.

Neptūnas extended deals with Šiauliai born forward Ligita Tamutytė and Kamile Mickutė.

There are five newcomers in Klaipeda so far.

Shooting guard Brigita Sinickaitė three years represented Aistes LSMU Kaunas, while Saule Mikelionytė last season played for Kibirkštis MRU.

Uliana Datsko last year played for the Ukrainian champion Prometey but after the start of the war briefly joined the Latvian side Daugavpils University.

Ukraine national team forward is now an important part of Neptūnas, just like her compatriot – a shooting guard Viktoria Balaban.

Neptūnas also strengthened the frontcourt, by adding a Cameroon international Linda Victorine Ndoli.

Center earned a bronze medal at the 2021 AfroBasket Women in Yaounde, Cameroon.

Ndoli has played in Luxembourg, Spain and Thailand.

Head coach Martynas Airošius last year shared the coaching reins with Gabalytė.


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