Bone's 12-Point, Six-Rebound Effort Helps U.S. to Medal Semifinals
July 31, 2009
BANGKOK, Thailand - South Carolina freshman Kelsey Bone scored 12 points, grabbed six rounds and blocked two shots in just 16 minutes on the court as the U.S. defeated France in the medal quarterfinals of the 2009 U19 FIBA World Championship Friday. After trailing by eight points late in the first half, the Americans rallied in the fourth quarter, outscoring the French team 25-16 in the final stanza.
Four of the USA's starters scored in double digits, led by USA team co-captains Skylar Diggins and Nnemkadi Ogwumike, who paved the way with 16 points apiece, Bone added 12 points and Shenise Johnson scored 10 points; while Samantha Prahalis dished out seven assists.
In the Aug. 1 semifinals for the right to play for the gold medal, the U.S. will face Canada (4-3), which went down to the wire in a 50-49 victory over previously undefeated Australia (6-1) in today's first quarterfinal contest. The other semifinal will feature Argentina (5-2), which beat Russia (4-3) tonight 67-75, going up against the winner of the Lithuania (3-3) versus Spain (6-0) quarterfinal game.
France, which hit four 3-pointers in the first quarter, took the lead four minutes into the contest and remained out in front for a 22-16 first quarter lead.
Prahalis and Diggins were forced to watch most of the second quarter after picking up two fouls each in the first three minutes of the period and France was able to remain in the lead. By the 3:42 mark in the second quarter, France owned its biggest advantage of the game, 34-36.
Layshia Clarendon got the U.S. back on track with a driving bucket at 2:44 and went on to score six points in a 10-2 run that closed the half with the game even at 36-all.
France put up the first points in the second half and at 8:33 the game was knotted for the final time at 40-40. Prahalis drove to the hoop at 8:15 and got both of her points from the stripe to put the U.S. ahead for good. That spurred an 8-0 run that ended with a pair of Johnson free throws and the U.S. was up 48-40 with 17:21 remaining in the contest.
In all, the United States outscored France 20-6 in a five-minute run that closed the first half and opened the second.
By the 2:15 mark in the third quarter the USA's lead expanded to 14 points, 63-49, and it seemed as the U.S. would run away with the quarterfinal game. However, a pair of offensive fouls and a third turnover by the USA over the period's final two minutes, helped France get back into contention, 63-59, at the end of the period.
France cut the gap again at the start of the final stanza to make it a two-point game, 63-61, with 9:27 to play. The U.S. again picked up its defensive intensity, Diggins took a charge and Johnson forced a pair of France turnovers, as the USA's offense took off on a 15-3 run to jump back to a double-digit lead, 78-64, with four minutes remaining. France never again threatened as the Americans won another victory to move to the semifinals.
After owning a slim 22-16 rebounding advantage in the first half, the red, white and blue took the battle of the boards for 44-26 at the end of the game, thanks in part to nine from Ogwumike and eight from Johnson.
The USA also shot an even 50 percent (35-70 FGs) from the field and scored 56 points in the paint, but made just 25.0 percent (2-8 3pt FGs) from beyond the arc. In contrast, France kept it close by shooting 36.4 percent (12-33 3pt FGs) from three, better than its icy 34.6 percent (28-81 FGs) from the field overall.
Story by USA Basketball