A big run in the second quarter got Brazil back into it against Argentina. Then, in the second half, Brazil all but won the game standing still.
Free Throws, Defense Help Brazil Edge Argentina, 64-61
Colorado Springs, Colo. - June 25, 2010
A big run in the second quarter got Brazil (2-1) back into it against Argentina (1-2). Then, in the second half, Brazil all but won the game standing still.
Tassia Carcavalli scored 18 points, and Brazil made 28-of-37 free throws to edge Argentina, 64-61, in each team's final preliminary round game in Group B of the FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women on June 25 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.
After falling behind, 22-6, in the first quarter, Brazil went on a 26-6 run to take a 29-28 lead into the half. Brazil then made 17-of-20 free throws in the third quarter and was able to fend off Argentina's late comeback attempt.
The difference in Brazil from the second quarter on, said head coach Luis Claudio Tarallo, was stout defense and an equally strong mindset.
"Defense was the difference," Tarallo said. "And the girls were nervous at the beginning of the game, so defense and a good mindset. They did a good job."
Melisa Gretter led Argentina with 18 points, and sank a big 3-pointer with 1:27 left in the game to cut Brazil's lead to 62-59. Then, Rocio Evangelina Diaz, who scored 15 points for Argentina, brought her team to within 62-61 with a jumper with 49 seconds left. But Aruzha Lima and Joice Santos each got to the line in the final 40 seconds.
Both made 1-of-2 free throws to give Brazil a 64-61 cushion when Argentina's Florencia Llorente committed an offensive foul with 3.9 seconds left, all but sealing Brazil's victory.
"For sure, the free throws made a difference at the end of the game," Tarallo said. "Argentina's defense was very good, so we were trying to get points in the paint, and we got our free throws."
Brazil, the Group B runner-up to the USA, now plays Group A winner Canada (3-0) in a medal semifinal game on June 26 at 3:30 p.m. (all times MDT).
Argentina, the third place team out of Group B, will play Costa Rica (0-3) in a consolation semifinal game on June 26 at 1:15 p.m., and will compete for fifth through eighth places in the tournament. With Chile qualified for the 2011 FIBA U19 World Championship for Women as the host country, the fifth place finisher in the U18 Championship also will earn a beth into next summers U19 Worlds.