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USA Basketball Wins Poitiers Challenger in Overtime Thriller

  • Date:
    Jul 2, 2022


The USA Basketball Men’s 3x3 World Tour team (Washington DC) won the Poitiers Challenger stop on the 2022 FIBA 3x3 World Tour in France by going 4-1 and qualifying for the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Masters in Prague starting July 30.  


To begin competitive play in Pool D, the USA dropped its opener to Kėdainiai 17-12, creating a must-win scenario in the second game of Friday’s two-game tilt. Led by Keaton Wallace, who scored nine points and grabbed four rebounds on 7-for-9 shooting from one-point range and 1-for-3 from two-point range, pulled out a 20-17 victory over Marijampolé, securing a second-place standing in Pool D by way of a total-point tiebreaker (32-30) and a spot in the quarterfinals to play Amsterdam on Saturday.


In the quarterfinals, the U.S. and Amsterdam were locked in a back-and-forth contest, where no team led by more than four points. With 10 seconds left to play, and the score even at 15, Hassani Gravett nailed a step-back two-point jump shot to give the USA a two-point lead, 17-15, as the buzzer sounded, lifting the U.S. to the semifinals.


Wallace led the U.S. in scoring with nine points. He also grabbed eight rebounds while shooting 4-for-11 on one-pointers and 1-for-1 on two-point shots. Not far behind was Gravett, who scored seven points and grabbed four rebounds while shooting 2-for-4 on one-pointers and 2-for-4 on two-pointers. 


Facing Danube in the semifinal, the USA received an offensive lift from Khalil Iverson, who scored 10 points on 8-for-10 shooting en route to a hasty 21-13 victory.  


In the final, the USA was set to rematch Marijampolé, whom they secured a victory over on Friday. The tightly contested final featured crucial runs from both teams, as both jostled for control of the contest.


With the USA leading 15-13, Marijampolé’s Aurimas Urbonas hit a buzzer-beating two-point jump shot to send the game to overtime. In overtime, where the first team to score two points wins, Marijampolé scored on a drive giving them a one-point lead (16-15). However, following a Marijampolé miss, the ball found Iverson, who hit the catch-and-shoot two-point jumper to seal the USA’s 17-16 victory.


Iverson led the USA in scoring in the final, tallying seven points on 2-for-6 shooting from one-point range and 2-for-5 shooting from two. To add, Iverson grabbed 10 rebounds and only turned the ball over once.


He was aided by Wallace, who scored five points in the final, and Gravett, who added four.


Wallace was named the Poitiers Challenger MVP after averaging six points and four rebounds per game in five games played.


The next stop for the men will be in Pristina, Kosovo, playing in the Pristina Challenger from July 16-17.


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