FEBRUARY 2020 AMERICUP QUALIFYING
San Juan, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. • February 20-23, 2020
The 2020-21 FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying Tournament got underway in an impressive way for the USA as the squad earned a pair of convincing victories over Puerto Rico in February.
FEB. 2020 USA RESULTS (2-0)
Former NBA head coach Mike Fratello was head coach of the USA Team, and the roster featured 11 players who were active in the NBA G League in 2019-20.
The USA, which led from wire-to-wire, sprinted to a 27-point halftime lead and held off Puerto Rico (0-1) in the second half to take a 83-70 victory on Feb. 20 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Ten U.S. players put points on the board, led by a double-double of 16 points and 11 rebounds from Jalen Jones. Also scoring in double digits were James Webb III with 13, Justin Anderson added 11 points and Jaylen Adams, who shot a perfect 4-of-4 from the field and had a pair of 3s, chipped in 10 points.
“Our team effort in the first half sensational. It was about as good of a first half as you can play. We defended and we shot the ball well,” said Fratello. “Jalen (Jones) is an inspiration to us. Jalen is a guy who when he is on top and talking, he’s a glue, he brings our team together. And then when he steps up and makes a big shot at the right time, or a couple free throws when we need it, they're the keys to us being able to hang on.
Holding an 8-6 lead early on, the USA netted a trio of 3s in a 11-0 run that put the U.S. up 19-6 midway through the first period. The USA continued to increase its lead to 33-14 behind nine 3s after the first 10 minutes of play. The USA outscored Puerto Rico 18-10 in the second quarter to up its lead at halftime to 51-24. Puerto Rico outscored the USA 26-14 in the third quarter to pull back to within 15 points, 65-50, and although the fourth quarter was relatively even scoring wise, won by Puerto Rico 20-18, the USA lead was cut to 10 points three times in the quarter, but each time the Americans scored a crucial basket to turn back the rally.
“We’ve been putting in so much work like coach said, practice after practice, a lot of film sessions and we knew this wasn’t going to be an easy game,” said Jones. “The coaches did a great job of preparing us for this, we knew it was going to be a battle, knew it was going to be a fight. I’m just glad we were able to win. Puerto Rico came out with a great competitive spirit and it was a great game.
The USA men topped Puerto Rico 95-73 to cap off play in the first window of FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying play on Feb. 23 at the Entertainment and Sports Arena in Washington, D.C. Fogg led the USA with 18 points and a game-high eight assists; Anderson finished with 17 points and seven rebounds; Jones added 14 points; Josh Magette had 11 points; and Eric Mika tallied 10 points.
“I was very proud of the (USA’s) performance,” said Fratello. “Puerto Rico came out very tough, very determined, but we wanted to try and finish what our mission was, and that was to go play two games against Puerto Rio and try to win both of them.
The U.S. limited Puerto Rico to 37.7% shooting from the field (23-61 FGs) and, led by 10 rebounds from Webb III, out-rebounded Puerto Rico 47-36. While the USA shot 44.4% from deep (16-36 3pt FGs), Puerto Rico was limited to just 25.0% from 3-point (6-of-24 3pt FGs). The USA bench outscored Puerto Rico’s 33 to 17.
“The toughest thing we did was to respond like we did and play the way we played in Puerto Rico and not get too high on our ourselves,” Anderson said. “I think we did a really good job of coming together, and we were locked in from the jump. We knew that Puerto Rico was going to come out with a lot of intensity, so as far as how we played, Coach emphasized a couple of things. He gave us a comparison in our meetings about rebounding and assists. Well, today it looks like we won both of those battles, and as a team if we can do that time in and time out with our athleticism, with our talent and our ability to share the ball, rebound the ball, we’re a tough team to beat, and I think we did a really good job of displaying that as a collective group.
FEBRUARY 2020 USA MEN'S AMERICUP QUALIFYING TEAM ROSTER
|Jaylen Adams||G||6-2||190||23||Wisconsin Herd/St. Bonaventure
|Justin Anderson||F||6-6||230||26||Long Island Nets/Virginia
|Cody Demps||G||6-4||195||26||Stockton Kings/Sacramento Kings
||Elk Grove, CA|
|Kyle Fogg||G||6-3||188||30||Beijing Royal Fighters (China)/Arizona
|Devon Hall||G||6-2||215||24||Oklahoma City Blue/Virginia
||Virginia Beach, VA|
|Jalen Jones||F||6-7||220||26||Capital City Go-Go/Texas A&M
|J.P. Macura||G||6-5||203||24||Canton Charge/Xavier
||C||6-10||230||25||Stockton Kings/Brigham Young
|Ivan Rabb||F||6-10||220||23||Westchester Knicks/California||Sacramento, CA|
|James Webb III||F||6-9||202||26||Iowa Wolves/Boise State||Augusta, GA|
|Head Coach: Mike Fratello|
|Assistant Coach: Andy Greer|
|Assistant Coach: Othella Harrington
|Team Physician: Stephen Foley, Sanford Health (Sioux Falls, SD)|
|Athletic Trainer: Ed Lacerte, ProSports Therapy, Inc. (Waltham and Westford, MA)|
|Team Scout: Sydney Johnson|
|Video Coordinator: Ryan Winters|
FEBRUARY 2020 USA MEN'S AMERICUP QUALIFYING TEAM CUMULATIVE STATISTICS
|Jones||2/2||9- 18||.500||6- 10||.600||6- 8||.750||16/ 8.0||30/ 15.0||1||0||0|
|Anderson||2/2||10- 22||.455||7- 18||.389||2- 2||.500||10/ 5.0||28/ 14.0||3||1||2|
|Fogg||2/2||5- 12||.417||4- 7||.571||12- 14||.857||7/ 3.5||26/ 13.0||12||0||3|
|Adams||1/0||4- 4||1.000||2- 2||1.000||0- 0||.---||0/ 0.0||10/ 10.0||0||0||0|
|Magette||2/2||4- 15||.267||3- 12||.250||7- 7||1.000||5/ 2.5||18/ 9.0||6||0||3|
|Mika||2/2||6- 10||.600||0- 0||.---||6- 10||.600||11/ 5.5||18/ 9.0||4||0||0|
| Webb III
||2/0||5- 15||.333||3- 9||.333||3- 4||.750||14/ 7.0||16/ 8.0||0||4||2|
|Demps||2/0||4- 8||.5000||0- 0||.---||4- 4||1.000||3/ 1.5||12/ 6.0||1||0||1|
|Hall||1/0||2- 5||.400||1- 3||.333||0- 0||.---||0/ 0.0||5/ 2.5||1||0||1|
|Randolph||2/0||3- 10||.300||2- 5||.400||2- 2||1.000||4/ 2.0||9/ 4.5||5||0||2|
|Macura||1/0||1- 1||1.000||0- 0||.---||0- 0||.---||1/ 1.0||2/ 2.0||0||0||0|
|Rabb||2/0||1- 6||.167||0- 0||.---||2- 2||1.000||7/ 3.5||4/ 2.0||3||2||1|
|USA||2||54-126||.429||27- 63||.429||43- 53||.811||85/42.5||178/ 89.0||36||7||14|
|OPP.||2||53-130||.408||12- 48||.250||25- 43||.581||75/37.5||143/ 71.5||34||11||11|