Canada knocks USA men from medal contention
KAZAN, Russia -- Doug McDermott had 17 points and a team-best nine rebounds, but it wasn't enough as Canada knocked Team USA from medal contention with a 94-85 victory to close out pool play in Group C at the World University Games in Kazan, Russia.
With today's loss, the American squad can finish no better than ninth place in the 24-team competition. Team USA will play three more times, starting with a 1 am Central game on Sunday vs. either Brazil, Finland or Norway, pending results later tonight.
Team USA started strong, showing no signs of a letdown after Thursday's upset loss to Australia. The Americans got eight early points from Luke Hancock (Louisville) to surge to a 14-4 lead, but Canada used a 14-3 flurry to take its first lead at 18-17 by the end of the first quarter. Team USA would not lead again.
Canada continued its offensive assault in the second period, producing a 10-0 run to take a 35-24 lead by the midpoint before a Treveon Graham (VCU) free throw stopped the bleeding for the US. McDermott (Creighton) made his first shot of the game to trim Canada's lead to 37-30. Canada would lead 46-36 at the intermission.
McDermott scored the first eight points of the second half for Tea USA, scoring inside before making a pair of three-pointers, as the US attempted a comeback. Canada would lead 69-58 after three quarters.
McDermott would open the fourth quarter with his fourth three-pointer of the game, and later add a fifth trey, but the Americans never got any closer than eight points in the final period. The game ended in bizarre fashion, as the arena lights went out with 10.6 seconds left in the contest and the final seconds were played with minimal lighting as the US held the ball without a shot.
Hancock paced Team USA with 27 points, with the Final Four's Most
Outstanding Player making 5-of-6 shots from three-point range. Cory
Jefferson (Baylor) and McDermott each scored 17, with the Creighton standout making 5-of-11 three-pointers and adding nine rebounds and an assist in 30 minutes. Team USA hit 15-of-32 shots from three-point range, but were just 14-for-40 from two-point territory and had 16 assists to go with 17 turnovers.
Canada was led by 20 points in 19 minutes from Baylor sharpshooter Brady Heslip, while Arizona State's Jordan Bachynski (13 points) and Stanford's Dwight Powell (10 points) also scored in double-figures. The Canadians outscored Team USA 52-22 in the paint.
With the win, Canada finished a perfect 5-0 in Group C pool play, while Australia (4-1) finished second with a 131-43 whipping of United Arab Emirates to clinch the group's second and final spot in the medal round. Team USA (3-2) finished third in pool play, ahead of Czech Republic (2-3), Sweden (1-4) and United Arab Emirates (0-5).
Assisting head coach Bob McKillop (Davidson) on the USA sideline are John Beilein of the University of Michigan and Frank Martin of the University of South Carolina.
The USA now holds a 141-11 all-time record in World University Games play. USA Basketball Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men's and women's basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA sponsored international competitions, as well as for some national competitions.
During the 2009-12 quadrennium, 1273 men and women players and 235 coaches participated in USA Basketball, including the USA Basketball 3x3 FIBA championships, USA Basketball trials and USA teams. Between 2009-12, USA Basketball men's and women's teams compiled an impressive 264-35 win-loss record in FIBA and FIBA Americas competitions, the Pan American Games, the World University Games, the Nike Hoop Summit and in exhibition games. USA teams are the current men's and women's champions in the Olympics; men's and women's FIBA World Championships; women's FIBA U19 World Champions; men's and women's FIBA U17 World Champions; and the men's and women's U18 and U16 FIBA Americas Championships.
USA Basketball also currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA's world
ranking categories, including combined, men's, women's, boys and girls.
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