The first game of Day 1 at the IWBF Americas U23 Qualification Tournament saw Brazil take on USA. Brazil with 10 new players came out slow only scoring 2 points in the first quarter to USA’s 16. Although the USA also had 12 players who were all new to the international game many more experience having already played a high level of college ball. Their experience paid off and was demonstrated both defense as well as offensive, allowing them to take a commanding lead into half time, 36 – 10.
In the second half Brazil kept it closer with just a basket difference in the third quarter, 12 – 14 and they even outscored USA in the final quarter 16 – 14. But the lead USA brought into the second half was too much for them to overcome – final score USA 64 – Brazil 38.
Top scorers for the USA were Jeromie Meyer with 18 points and Kyle Gribble with 15 points. Marshall Lindsay also added 13 points. For Brazil the top scorers were Anderson de Silva with 18 points and Francisco da Souza and Reyson da Silva both hit 10 points each.
In the second game hosts Argentina took to the court against Chile, with a loud boisterous crowd cheering them on. However Chile kept it close for the first half with quarter scores of 8 – 11 and 11 – 11 meaning Argentina just edged in front going into the half time break, 22 – 19.
In the second half it was a different story as Argentina outshone their Chilean counterparts, winning the half 29 -12 to win with a final score of Argentina, 51 – 27. At times the noise level in the venue was crazy as was the heat.
Top scorers for Argentina were Matias Mendez with 14 points and Augusto Bianchi with 11 points. Chile’s Jonathan Moreira scored most of his team’s points ending up with an tally of 18 points.
The opening ceremonies saw a lovely dance team entertain the players and the crowd alongside speeches from Omar Pochettino, President FABA, and Cristina Rosello, President of IWBF Americas, both of whom welcomed the young players and encouraged them to enjoy themselves and make new friends.
Day One Scores:
Brazil 38 – 64 USA
Argentina 51 – 27 Chile
Day Two schedule:
16.30 – USA vs Chile
18:45 – Argentina vs Brazil