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Youth Success

U19s crowned champions

16 seconds before the final buzzer, FCBB chief executive Marko Pesic began to hug parents of the players and fans in the stands as the tears began to flow. They were tears of joy as FC Bayern Basketball Under-19s secured a historic final victory. In front of more than 2,000 spectators in Hagen, Oliver Kostic’s side beat Eintracht/Skyliners Frankfurt 69-59 in the final of the Youth Basketball Bundesliga (NBBL) to win the German title in their first year in the competition.

A key figure in the title-winning squad, who were without injured captain Sebastian Schmitt, was 16-year-old Richard Freudenberg, who scored 24 points in the game and was voted the MVP of the playoffs after the game in Hagengekürt. The victory is the first time FCBB has won a youth title in Germany. The last championship-winning team to come from Munich was DJK Sportbund München’s Under-18s back in 1974. The emotions were high for head of department Andreas Minges and chief executives Pesic and Volker Stix.

“I’m unbelievably proud of my team. They have played two amazing games here. It was a long season and the guys have achieved so much,” said coach Kostic.

FCBB chief executive Marko Pesic explained how proud he was: “The coach and the players have showcased the club brilliantly. We have invested so much time in the youth department and it’s amazing to see that rewarded with our first title.”

Oliver Kostic, who was supported by JBBÖ coach Berthold Bisselik, and his team knocked out defending champions ALBA Berlin in the semi-finals on Saturday evening following a commanding 66-56 victory. Ahead of the final, Kostic was named NBBL Coach of the Year 2015 by Germany head coach Chris Fleming. Ludwigsburg, who knocked out Bayern in the quarterfinals, won the JBBL final (U16s) after beating Quakenbrück 62-61.