USA and China from Group A and Russia and France from Group B have all qualified for the quarterfinals with 3 wins in their first three games. That means that there are only two more spots open in each group.
France and Canada played a close game throughout, with the French being on top most of the time. One of the reasons for such close game was that none of the teams were able to convert from distance and going a combined 0 from 16 behind the arc. With a worse 2p shooting Canada held on with the help of superior offensive rebounding – they obtained a 10 offensive rebound advantage in the first half and held on to it until the end of the game.
Shona Thorburn scored 17 points for Canada, with 11 of those coming in the second half. Emilie Gomis once again led the French with 16 points, but she also turned the ball over 4 times.
Canada – France 60-64
Canada: Thorburn 17, Achonwa 14, Smith 8
France: Gomis 16, Yacoubou 12, Gruda 10, Dumerc 10
China looked very usual in the first half against Angola, not being able to limit the by miles lowest scoring team of the tournament. Angola scored 31 points in the first half, having averaged 44 points per game in previous two. In the second half everything returned back to normal – China started the half with a 16-2 run and the game was over by the end of the third quarter.
Nan Chen and Lijie Ma combined for 21 points in the second half, the same amount as the whole Angolan National Team in that span.
China – Angola 76-52
China: N.Chen 15, Ma 15, Gao 8
Angola: Guadalupe 12, Tomas 11, Jorge 10, Mauricio 9
In a rather awful game awfully playing Australia prevailed against the awful Brazil. Outside of Lauren Jackson and Liz Cambage it’s almost impossible to rate anyone from the Opals squad positively in this game. Despite the win the improvement from the game against was unnoticeable, maybe even you could rate their play as worse than the one two days earlier.
Australia – Brazil 67-61
Australia: Jackson 18, Cambage 17 (10 reb), Batkovic 11
Brazil: Costa 22, De Souza 11, Dos Santos 10
At times Russia showed glimpses of their potential with some outstanding plays in what overall was a slow, physical game.
Russia outshot, outrebounded, outassisted Great Britain only for their turnovers allowing the hosts to keep the game close. Russian sharpshooter Evgenia Belyakova who was their leading scorer for the second consecutive game, was the only player on their roster who did not turn the ball over during the game.
On the British side of things, everything looks quite dark – they are now a one Canada win away from being eleminated from quarterfinal contention.
Great Britain – Russia 61-67
Great Britain: Stafford 18, Leedham 14, Page 6, Fagbenle 6
Russia: Belyakova 12, Kuzina 10, Arteshina 9, Korstin 9
After three quarters full of runs, Czech Republic exploded in the fourth quarter with 32 points, which was overdue for the Czechs with the level of talent they have on the roster.
Katerina Elhotova coming from the bench with her team 0-10 down scored 10 of Czech Republic’s 22 points as they closed out the quarter on a 22-9 run. Czech Republic had some momentum in the second quarter and a part of third, but Croatia finished the third frame on 19-5 run which looked like it could have broken the backs of the underperforming world silver medalists. That wasn’t the case as the Czechs coming out of the break between quarters went on a 20-4 run themselves.
Croatia – Czech Republic 70-89
Great Britain: Mandir 20, Lelas 15, Ivezic 9
Canada: Elhotova 20, Burgrova 19, Viteckova 18, Vesela 12, Horakova 11
Despite some hot long distance shooting from Turkey, the outcome of the game never seemed to be in question as USA won their 21st consecutive game in major FIBA tournaments. Number 22 will be coming against Czech Republic on Friday.
USA – Turkey 89-58
USA: McCoughtry 18, Charles 16, Whalen 14, Augustus 9
Turkey: Vardarli 11, Hollingsworth 11, Palazoglu 7, Tuncluer 7
PS. Despite Basketball Australia and Associated Press shouting all over the World that Lauren Jackson has become the all time Olympic scoring leader, she hasn’t. Jackson still trails Janeth Arcain who has 535 career points to Jackson’s 497. Issue appears to be due to FIBA.com misspelling Arcain’s name in 1992 game’s records, so she has two profiles on FIBA.com whose point total needs to be summed to get the real number.