USA Women's 3x3 World Championship Team Advances To Semifinals
Colorado Springs, Colorado
The USA Women’s 3x3 World Championship Team (7-0) remained undefeated as it took down Uruguay (1-5) and France (5-2) at the 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championship on Saturday in Moscow, Russia, to secure a spot in the June 8 semifinals.
And while Demetrius Miller (Flint. Mich.) of the USA Men’s 3x3 World Championship Team will advance to the finals of tomorrow’s Dunk Contest, alongside the USA’s Jewell Loyd (Notre Dame/Lincolnwood, Ill.), who will compete in the skills contest, the U.S. men ended their run in the 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championship with a 19-15 tightly contested loss to Serbia (6-1) in the Round of 16.
The U.S. women will face Belgium (7-0) at 3 p.m. (7 a.m. EDT) on Sunday in the first of two semifinal contests. The other will see the Czech Republic (7-0) against host Russia (7-0) at 4:15 p.m. (8:15 a.m. EDT). The semifinal winners will meet in the gold medal game at 7 p.m. (11 a.m. EDT), and the bronze medal game is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. (9:30 a.m. EDT). All semifinal and final games, including the U.S. women’s game against Belgium, will be streamed live online at YouTube.com/3x3planet.
“(Our games today) were pretty physical, which is how a lot of teams have been playing us since we got here,” said Tiffany Mitchell (South Carolina/Charlotte, N.C.). “They’re trying to be really physical with us, so we’re just trying to keep our heads and just do what we do best. We know we’re a good team. We’re playing well, so that’s all we’re trying to keep doing.”
The USA women beat Uruguay (1-5) 19-6 to qualify amongst the eight teams moving on to the quarterfinals. Matched up against France (5-2), the USA came out on top 12-9 to advance to the semifinal round.
“(Belgium has) a pretty big post player that has won player of the year (in her area), and they have a pretty good guard as well, so we can use our speed against their post player, and play smart while attacking the rim against their guard,” Mitchell said of the USA’s semifinal opponent. “We’re going to try to attack the rim, get them in early foul trouble and get to the line to get easy points right there.”
The men’s semifinal games will see Russia (5-2) versus Serbia (6-1) at 3:30 pm (7:30 a.m. EDT) and Qatar (5-2) versus Lithuania (6-1) at 4:45 p.m. (8:45 a.m. EDT).
Against Serbia in the Round of 16, the USA men led 15-14 with under a minute left to play. Serbia then made one free throw to tie the game, got the rebound off of the second free throw miss, scored and took the lead. Serbia continued to make shots and free throws down the stretch, while the USA turned the ball over and missed it's 3-point attempt in the final seconds. Forced to foul with nine seconds remaining, the USA was whistled for an intentional foul, and Serbia made both from the line and then ran the clock out.
“I think we played very hard,” said U.S. men’s player Craig Moore (New York, N.Y.). “We have a lot of hard workers on our team, and we played together. Unfortunately, we came up a little short and empty handed. I think this was a very good learning experience for our team and our guys that we can bring home for the rest of the 3x3 and teach the rest of the country how the game is played on a world stage. Hopefully we can do better next time.”
In addition to the men’s and women’s 3x3 tournaments, included in the 2014 3x3 World Championship program were also a skills contest for women, a dunk contest for men, men’s and women’s shoot-out contests, and men’s and women’s free throw pursuits.
Loyd qualified with the fastest time in the skills challenge contest on Saturday afternoon to advance to Sunday’s finals, where she will have a chance to compete for a medal and follow in the footsteps of Skylar Diggins, who was a 2012 FIBA 3x3 World Championship gold medalist and a silver medalist in the 2012 skills challenge.
On the men’s side, Miller will have an opportunity to medal as he qualified for the finals in the dunk contest, despite saying he did not show his best stuff.
“I didn’t put down any of my best dunks today, so I’m looking forward to show the best in the finals and win the competition,” Miller said.
In addition to Miller and Moore, the USA men’s team includes Mack Darrow (Newport, Calif.) and Jitim Young(Chicago, Ill.).
Joining Mitchell and Loyd on the USA women’s team are Cierra Burdick (Tennessee/Charlotte, N.C.) and Sara Hammond (Louisville/Mt. Vernon, Ky.).
The 2014 FIBA 3x3 World Championship features 24 men’s teams and 24 women’s teams, and is just the second edition of the biennial event. In addition to the men’s and women’s 3x3 tournaments, included in the 2014 3x3 World Championship program will be a skills contest for women, a dunk contest for men, men’s and women’s shoot-out contests, and men’s and women’s free throw pursuits. The qualification process will take place on Saturday, while the medal finals will be held on Sunday afternoon.
In addition to the USA Basketball 3x3 squad, nations competing for the men’s 2014 3x3 World Championship gold medal are: Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Lithuania, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Puerto Rico, Romania, host Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Taiwan, Tunisia, Turkey, Uruguay and Venezuela; while in addition to the USA team, the women’s field includes Andorra, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Romania, host Russia, Spain, Syria, Taiwan, Thailand, Tunisia, Uganda and Uruguay.
At the inaugural 2012 FIBA 3x3 World Championship that was held in Athens, Greece, the USA women’s team, featuring Diggins, Bria Hartley, Chiney Ogwumike and Ann Strother, captured the gold medal with a perfect 9-0 record, France took silver and Australia earned the bronze medal. The USA men’s team, featuring Adetayo Adesanya, Ira Brown, Tyree Hardge and Allen DuBois Williams finished with a 7-2 record and in seventh place. Earning the men’s gold was Serbia, while France collected silver and Ukraine went home with the bronze medal.
In the skills competition, Adesanya collected a silver medal in the dunk contest, while Diggins claimed silver in the skills challenge.
Based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA Basketball, chaired by Jerry Colangelo, is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men's and women's basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA-sponsored international competitions, as well as for some national competitions, and for the development of youth basketball initiatives that address player development, coach education and safety.
During the 2009-12 quadrennium, 1,273 male and female players and 235 coaches participated in USA Basketball, including USA Basketball teams and trials, and USA Basketball 3x3 FIBA championships.
USA Basketball men's and women's teams between 2009-12 compiled an impressive 262-35 win-loss record in FIBA and FIBA Americas competitions, the Pan American Games, the World University Games, the Nike Hoop Summit and in exhibition games.
USA teams are the current men's and women's champions in the Olympics; men's and women's FIBA World Championships (Basketball World Cup); men’s and women’s FIBA U19 and U17 World Championships; men's and women's U18 and U16 FIBA Americas Championships; the FIBA 3x3 Women's World Championship; and the FIBA 3x3 Women's U18 World Championship. USA Basketball currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA's world-ranking categories, including combined, men's, women's, boys and girls
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