Spain 73, Canada 60 - With second place behind the Americans on the line, the Spaniards came out ahead of the Canadians, powered by 20 points from Alba Torrens. Spain gets the #2 spot in the group and a quarterfinals matchup with Turkey, the third place team in Group A, while third place Canada will play France, Group A’s second place team.
The most surprising part about that final score is that Kim Gaucher scored for Canada as the third period ended to make it a 49-47 game in favor of Spain. It took an 11-0 run by Spain the final frame to put things out of reach.
Katherine Plouffe played just a little under seven minutes in this one. She only two points, but she got two rebounds and an assist as well.
United States 100, France 97 - 16 point lead late in the third quarter and a French team that had Tony Parker sitting out? Should be an easy coast for the Americans, right?
The lead dwindled to 12 by the start of the fourth quarter, and if Antoine Diot hits the three-pointer he took with 46 seconds left instead of the one he took as time expired to cut the final margin to three, maybe this game ends a little bit differently. Still, Team USA finishes group play undefeated and will wait until after Monday’s action to see who their quarterfinals opponent will be.
I don’t want to claim I know more about basketball than USA head coach Mike Krzyzewski, but Jimmy Butler didn’t play after halftime. I get the kind of quality of players on the roster, but you’d think that while you’re in the process of blowing 13 points off your 16 point lead, you’d want to get a player like Butler on the court. Butler finished with two points, one rebound, and one assist in his 6:26 of first half action.
Australia 81, Venezuela 56 - The FIBA Americas champions needed a victory over Australia and help from China to advance to the quarterfinals. Venezuela didn’t help their own case, falling to the Boomers in relatively decisive fashion. Is it consolation that Serbia blew out China in the final game of Group A? Probably not.
Things fell apart quickly for Venezuela, as Australia scored the first seven points of the game on their way to taking a 16-2 lead. The good news is that your man David Cubillan is the guy who scored the bucket for Venezuela. They actually trimmed the lead by three points across the breadth of the second quarter, but Australia dragged those three points back from them in the third before blowing the game completely open in the fourth.
Cubillan finished with 10 points on 3-of-8 shooting and added three assists to the Venezuelan effort.