Friday, 17 August 2007

Canada outlasts Argentina to go to 2-0 in Puerto R

For the second consecutive night, 6'2" Jermaine Anderson came up huge down the stretch, breaking a 75 all tie with a jumper with only 1:12 remaining and then adding the clinching basket with the shot clock winding down and 25 seconds remaining in the game as Canada moved to 2-0 in the Tuto Marchand Contential Cup in Puerto Rico with a solid 84-78 victory over Argentina this evening. The game, in which Canada blew a 17 point third quarter lead, was a thriller with big runs by each team and ended in some controversy as after Anderson's jumper with 25 seconds left, when all hell appeared to break loose as Argentina's pair of 6'1" guards Paolo Prigioni and Paolo Quinteros each were disqualified and both benches were assessed technicals. Quinteros had led a valiant Argentine rally with 10 fourth-quarter points that ultimately tied the game. But 6'5" Andy Rautins knocked in a big 3 with 3:47 to play, breaking a 15-1 Argentina run and starting a 7-2 Canada run of their own. However, 6'10" Luis Scola later knocked in a jumper to tie the game, setting up Anderson's heroics. 6'5" Carl English was instrumental in the win for Canada, going off for 30 points including 13 in the third quarter when a 20-4 run put Canada on top by 17 at 59-42. 6'5" Olu Famutimi also was key during the third quarter run, scoring 6 points including an emphatic dunk. Canada stiffened defensively coming out of the intermission, causing Argentina to miss their first 7 shots of the second half and English, Famutimi, Anderson (with a three) and 6'5" Denham Brown went to work giving Canada a 61-47 lead with one quarter remaining. Scola and 6'6" Carlos Delfino went to work bringing Argentina back and after consecutive turnovers by English around the 6 minute mark, Quinteros culminated a 10-0 Argentina run with a 3 while scoring 7 points during the run. Scola's jumper with 4 minutes remaining tied the game setting the stage for Rautins 3 and then Anderson's clutch shots to win the game for Canada. Canada was whistled for 29 fouls against only 19 for Argentina even as the Argies fouled late. English went 5-7 from 3, part of a solid 8 for 15 effort by Canada from downtown, while Rautins added 12 in only 14 minutes and Famutimi 11. 6'10" Samuel Dalembert finished with 5 points and 6 rebounds while Anderson had 8 points including 2 3's, all in the second half. Canada won despite turning the ball over 28 times, many during the 15-1 Argentina run early in the fourth quarter which brought the game back. Canada also outrebounded the taller, more physical Argentinians 33-30 and held them to only 39% shooting overall including 5-21 from 3. Quinteros finished with 16 while Scola added 15 and 5 boards while Delfino, who had 10 points in the first quarter, added only 5 the rest of the way to end up with 15. Canada goes for the Tuto Marchand Cup championship tomorrow night when they meet Brazil, who should have NBAer's 6'3" Leandro Barbosa and 6'11" Nene back in the lineup.

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