- Associated Press - Saturday, June 27, 2015

For the first time since boycotting the 1984 Olympics, Russia won’t have a women’s basketball team in the Olympics.

Russia finished in sixth place at the EuroBasket tournament Saturday, losing to Turkey in overtime 68-66. The winner of the tournament gets an automatic bid to the 2016 Rio Olympics. The next four teams receiving bids to a last-chance Olympic qualifying tournament next year.

The Russians are the only other team besides the United States to win a gold medal in women’s basketball at the Olympics. The former Soviet Union won the first two medals in 1976 and 1980 before boycotting the 1984 games in Los Angeles. The Unified team won in 1992. The Americans have won every gold since, including the 2012 London Games - where Russia finished fourth.

New York Liberty guard Epiphanny Prince played for Russia in the EuroBasket tournament and led the team with 13.8 points a game. It wasn’t enough as Russia blew a three-point lead in the final minute of overtime against Turkey.

Russia has been on a downward spiral since a bronze medal in the 2008 Beijing Games. The Russians haven’t been on the medal stand since at a major international competition.

The team finished seventh at the 2010 world championship and fourth at the London Games. Russia failed to qualify for last year’s world championship and now won’t be playing in the Olympics.

Russia added Prince in 2010 when she became a naturalized citizen. She had a chance to be the second American-born player to play for Russia’s national team in the Olympics. Becky Hammon played in the last two Olympics for Russia.

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