AUGUST 2022 FIBA WORLD CUP QUALIFYING
Las Vegas, Nevada, and Barranquilla, Colombia • August 25-29, 2022
The United States opened the second round of qualifying for the 2023 FIBA Men’s World Cup with two wins over Uruguay (105-71) and Colombia (95-77), marking six straight victories for the U.S. The two wins improved the USA's overall record to 7-1 and pushed the Americans to first place in the group standings.
AUG. 2022 USA RESULTS (2-0)
In its first game versus Uruguay, John Jenkins scored 22 points, Langston Galloway had 18 and DaQuan Jeffries 16 for the USA, who blew the game open with a 21-2 run early in the second quarter that turned a tight game into a comfortable cruise to victory.
“We have great leadership on this team,” said U.S. coach Jim Boylen, in his fourth window with this team. “We have as much a player-coached team as any window we’ve had. … They take ownership of this. We talk about it. It’s an option to come here. You could maybe do something else, but once you’re here, you’re obligated to play the way we play and to give it everything you have. Langston and John and (Jeffries), they’ve really led us and it makes it easy on everyone. They’ve led. They’ve taught the young guys.”
Baskets by Esteban Batista and Luciano Parodi opened the game and gave Uruguay a quick 4-0 lead. Not soon after that, Eric Mika of the U.S. picked up his second foul and was sent to the bench for the rest of the half.
It was at that point the U.S. team showed up to right the ship, and behind seven points from Jeffries and five from Galloway, the Americans were able to take a 20-16 lead after the first quarter. Soon after in the second, the U.S. found its touch and exploded for a 21-2 run that made it 43-21 and a cruise to the finish. The U.S. also had 16 assists on 21 first-half buckets.
The U.S. would go on to score a personal best for points in a 2023 World Cup Qualifying game and earn the win, 105-71.
“I thought we got a lot from a lot of guys,” Boylan said. “Dewan was terrific. I thought Robert (Woodard II) had his moments, I thought Mac McClung had his moments. You know, you play your minutes as hard as you can, you play them the right way and I think good things happen. With this team, like every window we’ve had, our depth is a big weapon for us. But your depth has to have the right attitude because you can’t start 10 guys, 12 guys, right? So, I just love the fact that our guys come off the bench with force and ready to play. We hope we can wear people down. We hope we can. And tonight, I thought every guy just played as hard as he could play.”
Following the first win, the U.S. packed their bags and left for Barranquilla, Colombia, for the second leg of the world cup qualifying window. Both the United States and Colombia were in strong form entering the game, with the U.S. winning its last five qualifying matches and Colombia its last three.
After both teams traded opening scores, the U.S. went on a 10-0 run to take an early ten-point lead (12-2) with just under five minutes remaining in the first frame. Colombia stayed the course, outscoring the U.S. 8-7 through the rest of the first, leaving the U.S. with a nine-point lead entering the second quarter.
The U.S. stretched their lead to 13 by the end of the quarter, but poor shooting hampered the Americans and gave Colombia hope going into the second stanza. Colombia, which handed Brazil its only first-round loss on the same court, fed off the home crowd to climb out of an early 17-5 hole in the first quarter. As the U.S. struggled with its shot, Colombia’s confidence grew and the hosts came within 31-26 on Andre Felipe Ibarguen Andrews’ basket with 2:51 left in the half. Ensuing 3-pointers from Jenkins and Galloway restored a little breathing room for the U.S., which led 45-32 at halftime.
After going 17-of-37 from the field in the first half, including just 8-of-23 from distance, the USA rewrote the script by shooting 18-of-28 in the final 20 minutes, including 9-of-11 on 3-pointers, to keep the cardiac Colombians — who have had a penchant for comebacks — at bay.
“I want our guys to play loose, and I want them to play confident,” Boylen said. “What we talked about is, ‘Continue to move (the ball) and they’ll go down.’ You’re not going to make every one, so sometimes when you miss, you think those are bad shots. I thought we had the right guys shooting them.”
John Jenkins connected on eight 3-pointers en route to 26 points for the U.S., while Langston Galloway and DaQuan Jeffries added 14 apiece.
“Just never giving up,” Jenkins said of the key to the victory. “I told everybody in the locker room before the game not to worry about what happens in the first quarter. I’ve been in this moment before and a lot of times we end up being down in the first quarter. We were up, but we were missing shots. We didn’t play like we thought we were going to play in the beginning. We kept going, we kept fighting, we kept playing and shots started to fall.”
Jenkins stamped his name into the record books with his performances against Uruguay and Colombia. In this two-game window, he finished with 48 points and 14 3-pointers. His 26 points vs. Colombia tied for the most by an American in World Cup qualifying, set by Cameron Reynolds against Panama on Feb. 22, 2019, and tied by Justin Jackson against Puerto Rico on July 1, 2022. Jenkins’ eight 3-pointers against Colombia also broke the U.S. qualifying record, which he shared with Reynolds after hitting six against Uruguay.
In Group F competition, a Mexico win over Brazil 82-72 and Uruguay bouncing back to top Puerto Rico 78-70, gave the U.S. a two-game lead in Group F, one of two groups in the Americas region.
AUGUST 2022 USA MEN'S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING TEAM ROSTER
|Tyler Cavanaugh||F||6-9||238||28||BC Žalgiris (LTU)/George Washington
|Malik Ellison||G||6-6||215||25||College Park Skyhawks/Hartford
||Voorhees Township, NJ|
|Michael Frazier II||G||6-4||200||28||Perth Wildcats (AUS)/Florida
|Langston Galloway||G||6-1||200||30||College Park Skyhawks/Saint Joseph's
||Baton Rouge, LA|
|Dewan Hernandez||F/C||6-11||235||25||Vaqueros de Bayamón (PUR)/Miami
|DaQuan Jeffries||G/F||6-0||230||24||College Park Skyhawks/Tulsa
|John Jenkins||G/F||5-10||215||31||BCM Gravelines-Dunkerque (FRA)/Vanderbilt
|Mac McClung||G||6-2||185||23||Golden State Warriors/Texas Tech
||Gate City, VA|
|Eric Mika||F||6-7||215||24||JL Bourg-en-Bresse (FRA)/BYU
|David Stockton||G||5-11||165||31||Memphis Hustle/Gonzaga||Spokane, WA|
|Robert Woodard II||F||6-6||235||22||Oklahoma City Blue/Mississippi State
|McKinley Wright IV||G||5-11||192||23||Iowa Wolves/Colorado||Champlin, MN|
|Head Coach: Jim Boylen|
|Assistant Coach: Ty Ellis|
|Assistant Coach: Othella Harrington|
AUGUST 2022 USA MEN'S WORLD CUP QUALIFYING TEAM CUMULATIVE STATISTICS
|Woodard II||2/0||8- 14||.571||2- 5||.400||0- 0||.---||6/ 3.0||18/ 9.0||3||1||0|
|Stockton||2/2||5- 8||.625||2- 3||.667||1- 1||1.000||5/ 2.5||13/ 6.5||14||1||2|
|Wright IV||2/0||2- 6||.333||1- 1||1.000||0- 0||.---||1/ 0.5||5/ 2.5||3||0||2|
|McClung||2/0||1- 3||.333||0- 0||.---||3- 4||.750||2/ 1.0||5/ 2.5||1||0||1|
|Ellison||1/0||0- 0||.---||0- 0||.---||0- 0||.---||0/ 0.0||0/ 0.0||0||0||0|
|Galloway||2/0||11- 25||.440||6- 15||.400||4- 4||1.000||5/ 2.5||32/ 16.0||7||0||0|
|Hernandez||2/0||8- 11||.727||0- 0||.---||2- 3||.667||15/ 7.5||18/ 9.0||2||3||0|
|Jeffries||2/2||11- 16||.688||6- 11||.545||2- 2||1.000||3/ 1.5||30/ 15.0||2||1||0|
|Frazier II||2/2||3- 5||.600||0- 2||.000||0- 0||.---||9/ 4.5||6/ 3.0||5||0||1|
|Jenkins||2/2||17- 25||.680||14- 21||.667||0- 0||.---||2/ 1.0||48/ 24.0||4||0||0|
|Mika||2/2||5- 8||.625||0- 0||.---||2- 4||.500||12/ 6.0||12/ 6.0||3||0||1|
|Cavanaugh||2/0||6- 10||.600||1- 5||.200||0- 0||.---||7/ 3.5||13/ 6.5||5||0||2|
|USA||2||77-131||.588||32- 63||.508||14- 18||.778||74/37.0||200/100.0||49||6||9|
|OPP.||2||54-119||.454||8- 28||.286||32- 47||.681||51/25.5||148/74.0||27||0||16|