Both Canadian women’s youth teams were victorious in their opening tune-up games before each team play in their respective tournaments.
The junior women’s national team played in an exhibition game against Argentina in Puerto Rico, as they prepare for the FIBA Americas U18 Championship that begins Wednesday, August 15 against Brazil.
Samantha Cooper led the way for the junior women’s team as they were able to squeak pass Argentina, 49-44.
The Canadian Cadette Women’s National Team played in an exhibition game against Belgium to prepare for the upcoming FIBA U17 World Championship. In the opening half, it was a competitive game with Belgium taking the lead into the locker room, 33-26.
Belgium began to separate themselves in the third quarter by extending their lead to as many as 21. With 6 minutes left and an 18 point lead for Belgium, the game liked it was in the bag for Belgium, but the feisty Canadian Team was able to dig themselves out of a hole to force overtime.
Quinn Dornstauder took over the game for Canada in the fourth and led the comeback. Dornstauder was able to be a force defensively with deflections and rebounds while also finishing on the offensive end.
In overtime, Canada’s defense took control and led them to the victory over Belgium.
“After a rough first three quarters, finding our legs after travel and playing our first game together we could have packed it in when we were down 21, but instead we dug deep, demonstrated great heart, did not quit and battled back,” said head coach, Carly Clarke.
Clarke added, “We made extra effort plays late, got the ball inside and had several second chances from offensive rebounds. We have lots to improve on and clean up, but a great learning experience of what can happen when we do not quit.”
In the fourth quarter and overtime, Canada was able to get to the free-throw line 22 times.
Quinn Dornstauder commented, “I think that we had an exceptional comeback, which was fun to be a part of, but that we can't be satisfied with that alone. We should never have to be in the situation in the first place.”
Canada opens up the FIBA U17 World Championship on Friday versus Italy. Tip-off is set for 9:45am EDT and the game will be available to follow via, FIBA Live-Stats.