The event is turning into a question of who will be the 2nd place team. The USA clearly has the best team in the tournament by a WIDE margin. The Americans defeated a completely over-matched squad from Mali in an embarrassing 98-28 contest. The USA led 54-14 at halftime and held Mali to 18% shooting for the game. The USA was led by Rebecca Greenwell, Diamond DeShields and Brianna Turner who each scored 13 points. No USA player played more than 26 minutes and everyone played more than ten.
The home Netherlands squad upset a Spanish team that was resting three of their players by a score of 56-37. Minutes were spread out for both squads in what was essentially a meaningless game and no one in the game scored in double figures.
Australia handed Japan their first loss easily in a 100-66 win after Japan pulled four of their starters after 5 minutes of play. 6’3 Alanna Smith led the Aussies with 15 points and nine blocked shots. The 6’2 Froling twins, Keely and Alicia, scored 13 and 12 points respectively in their longest tournament action for Australia.
Elisa Penna had another solid game with 15 points and 13 rebounds to lead Italy to a 59-51 win over Belgium. Hind Ben Abdelkader, the Belgian star has been attracting tight defense on her after her high scoring performances in the first two games. Today she scored 13 points on 2-for-17 shooting. In her last three games she’s shot 7-for-58, including 2-of-32 on two-pointers. Belgium doesn’t have any other offensive weapons.
Canada topped South Korea 74-61 as 6’4 Saicha Grant-Allen scored 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds. Canada out-rebounded the Koreans by a 2:1 margin (56-28) but turned the ball over an astounding 37 times in a poorly played game with 61 total turnovers.
Brazil won their first game over Turkey 62-50 and kept the Turks winless. Neither team had a chance to advance to the quarterfinals. Izabella Sangalli led Brazil with 20 points although she did so on 5-for-20 shooting. Turkey only scored 15 points in the second half. They were led by another strong effort from 6’2 Hulya Coklar. Coklar played the entire game and scored 17 points and pulled down 16 boards.
Here are Friday’s quarterfinal matchups: (2) Italy vs. (3) Spain, (1) Japan vs. (4) Belgium, (2) Netherlands vs. (3) Canada and (1) USA vs. (4) Australia.
Thanks to FIBA for the photos!