Bone Paces U.S. to 64-50 Win Over Canada
July 27, 2009
BANGKOK, Thailand - South Carolina freshman Kelsey Bone tied for team-high honors with 14 points as the United States topped Canada 64-50 in its first game of second-round action in the FIBA U19 World Championships Monday in Bangkok, Thailand. The U.S. (3-1) utilized a 15-2 run at the end of the first quarter to pull away from Canada (2-2). The game saw three U.S. players score in double digits, as Samantha Prahalis matched Bone with 14 points and Nnemkadi Ogwumike added 11 points and a team-high 12 rebounds.
Up next for the USA is Russia (4-0), which is undefeated, on July 28 (4:15 a.m. EDT), and the U.S. closes second round play against Japan (1-2) on July 29 (2:00 a.m. EDT).
It took almost seven minutes for the USA to find its rhythm. After eight lead changes and three knotted scores, Canada hit a bucket a 3:21 to go up 10-7. Owens called a time out to regroup and her strategy worked.
"We are a team that sometimes has a tendency to come out a little slow," said Bone. "It's hard for us to dig ourselves out of a hole late, so [head coach Carol Owens] wanted us to pick up our intensity. We knew that once we picked up the intensity and started getting it going, once our posts and our guards started hitting some shots, that they wouldn't be able to guard us one through five."
Out of the time out the United States put full-court pressure on Canada, frustrating the Canucks into no less than three turnovers over a three-minute span, while its offense went to work on the opposite end. At 3:01 Layshia Clarendon, who finished with six points, hit a bucket from a Prahalis assist. That, along with continuous defensive pressure by the American women, sparked a 15-1 scoring run that saw six different players score and by the end of the first quarter the U.S. was up 22-12. In all, Canada was forced into five turnovers and made just 5-of-18 attempts from the field in the first stanza.
"We kind of knew that with their personnel, they hadn't been pressured a lot throughout the tournament and their guards weren't going to be expecting it because we haven't shown it," added Bone. "So once we pulled it out, we got a lot of turnovers right when we did it. It was very effective."
The lead quickly ballooned to 18 points as the USA opened the second quarter on a 12-4 run to take a 34-16 lead at 6:58. With 2:05 to play in the half, the U.S. was up 39-20. However, the U.S. lapsed on defense and Canada's Laura Dally hit back-to-back threes and the halftime lead was cut to 39-26.
Canada got a put-back to open the second half, however the USA reeled off 10 unanswered points, four each from Bone and Prahalis, and the U.S. held its largest lead of the game, 49-28. While Canada never seriously threatened, the USA's neighbors to the north never stopped fighting. By the end of the third quarter the score was 54-37 and Canada outscored the U.S. in the fourth quarter for the 64-50 final.
Canada's Taryn Wicijowski grabbed a game-high 16 points, Kayla Alexander, who entered the game as the tournament's top rebounder averaging 13.3 rpg., was Canada's leading scorer with 12 points and added nine rebounds, and Dally shot 2-of-3 from beyond the arc and finished with 10 points.
The American women forced 21 Canadian turnovers and were credited with 12 steals, however, Canada out-rebounded the United States 46-38.
Skylar Diggins was sick and did not play.
The second round runs through July 29. The top four finishing teams in each second round group will advance to compete in the July 31 quarterfinals. Semifinal action is scheduled for Aug. 1, and the gold medal will be contested on Aug. 2.