Shenzhen, China – The NetScouts Basketball Women’s USA All-Stars (7-1) held off an inspired Denmark (2-6) squad in a 88-82 win. It was the third straight win for the Americans over the Danes on the tour.
Denmark had a hot shooting night from the floor as they connected on 50 percent of their shots (40.6 percent, 13-of-32 from the arc), but in the end were unable to keep pace with the Americans. The USA was lead by the interior duo of Stephanie Lee (Northern Colorado) and Alexyz Vaioletama (USC) who led the charge with 21 points each as the Americans hung on for the victory.
The Danes started the contest hot, scoring a tournament-high 33 points in the first quarter in taking a 10-point lead. The USA came back with a strong defensive second quarter, holding Denmark to 14 points as the Americans took a 49-47 halftime lead. The second half was close throughout with the USA generally holding leads from 3-8 points.
The Americans had four players in double digits as Keani Albanez (Gonzaga) and Cierra Warren (San Diego State) added 16 and 14 points respectively. Deanna Weaver (Boise State – 7 points), Keena Mays (SMU – 6 points) and Ariel Thomas (Oregon – 3 points) rounded out the scoring.
Another key factor in the USA victory was dominating the rebounding battle. Warren completed the double-double as she added 11 rebounds. Weaver also finished with 11 rebounds and Vaioletama grabbed eight as the Americans finished the game with a 41-27 rebound margin, including an 18-6 margin on the offensive boards. The second chances helped the USA get to the foul line 19 times, where they converted 16. Denmark was only 5-of-11 from the charity stripe.
Thomas once again led the team with assists this time dishing out five. Albanez, Mays, Warren, and Thomas all came up with two steals and Weaver led the way with three as the USA All-Stars tallied 11 steals on 18 Danish turnovers. Joy Burke (Arizona State) did not play tonight and her availability tomorrow night will be a game-time decision.
The Danes had four players register double figures as Anna Seilund had 21 (5-of-8 on 3’s), Kiki Lund had 14 (4-of-6 from 3), Maria Jespersen (South Florida) had 12 (2-of-3 on 3’s) and Ida Tryggedsson added 11.
The Americans tallied their highest scoring output of the tour. They will look to try to bring the same offensive firepower and will attempt to slow down the Chinese attack in the final game of the tour tomorrow night. That game will decide the winner of the Shenzhen tournament as well as the overall winner of the Four Nations tournament.
In the earlier game, China (7-1) rolled over Poland 82-47 (0-8). Poland will look to get their first win on the tour tomorrow night against Denmark.
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