CANADA FALLS TO #2 RANKED AUSTRALIA IN FIBA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP QUARTERFINAL

ANKARA, TURKEY – Coming off a strong performance against the Czech Republic on Wednesday, Team Canada put up a hard fought fight against #2 ranked Australia today in the quarterfinals at the 2014 FIBA World Championships for Women.

Head Coach Lisa Thomaidis praised her team’s late charge and commended their overall play against the experienced Australian team.

“Although we didn't get the win today, we fought hard and we proved that we belong here,” she said.

In an exciting first quarter, the teams matched each other’s intensity, fiercely battling on both ends of the floor. Canada led for the majority of the quarter before Australia pulled ahead in the dying seconds to take a 19-17 advantage.  

Australia then picked up the defensive pressure in the second quarter, holding Canada to 7 points in the frame, putting the Opals ahead 36-24 heading into halftime.

Michelle Plouffe (Edmonton, AB) would help spark the Canadians in the 3rd with back-to-back three pointers but that momentum was short-lived, as Australia retaliated with a couple quick baskets of their own to hold their lead at 51-35.

Shona Thorburn (Hamilton, ON) and Kia Nurse (Hamilton, ON) led a late rally by Canada in the final quarter with key plays on both offensive and defense, but it was not enough to overcome Australia’s lead, falling 63-52.

?Coach Thomaidis recognized the high-level of play from the Australian team after the game.  

This loss stings. We just weren't the same team as we were a couple days ago against the Czech Republic. But we have to give Australia some credit there for disrupting our offensive flow,” said Thomaidis.

 

Miranda Ayim (London, ON) led the way for Canada with 11 points, while battling under the rim for seven rebounds. Katherine Plouffe (Edmonton, AB) also added in 10 points and 2 rebounds.

Team Canada, currently ranked #9, is still guaranteed an impressive top 8 finish at the tournament and will now head to the classification round tomorrow to face the loser of the USA vs. France game.  (time tbd)

Full box score from Canada vs. Australia:

http://www.fiba.com/ls/#6242&BKW400303  

 

Team Canada’s games are broadcast LIVE on NBATV Canada and tape-delayed on Sportsnet1.

 

For the complete 2014 FIBA World Championship for Women schedule, go to

 

http://basketball.ca/en/team_programs/womens-team