CANADA LOSES TO CUBA IN OVERTIME, 69-66

LOGRONO, SPAIN –Canada loses the first of two exhibition games in Spain as the Senior Women take a 69-66 loss to Cuba in overtime.

Canada was off to a slow start against Cuba, and were down 19-7 at the end of the first frame. After a few quick baskets in the 2nd quarter, the women put together a strong 10 minutes of action to cut the lead to 28-22 going into halftime; led by Miranda Ayim (London, ON) with 9 points (4/4) and 5 rebounds.

In the 3rd quarter the two teams went back and forth throughout, with Cuba ending the frame ahead 47-42.

Canada took their first lead of the game with a basket by Katherine Plouffe (Edmonton, AB) heading into the remaining minutes. Cuba would go back up two in the final minute but a costly foul tied the game up and sent it into overtime.

In the extra time, teams traded baskets but Cuba came away victorious, 69-66 in the exhibition game.

"I thought tonight we had lots of missed opportunities. We showed a lot of resilience coming back from the halftime deficit", said Lisa Thomaidis, Head Coach. “Cuba played with a lot of physicality and I thought we handled that better in the second half. Unfortunately, we missed opportunities, missing 15 free throws and a number of defensive block outs that gave them second chance points. In the grand scheme of things this is a tremendous experience for us. To be in a close game and execute down the stretch, have pressure free throws and get stops, all those things that are important going into worlds."

Miranda Ayim (London, ON) led the way for Team Canada nearly missing a double double with 18 points, and 9 rebounds, while Katherine Plouffe (Edmonton, AB) also added in 11 points, and 5 rebounds in the loss.

“We fought hard to come back into the game after being down by 15”, said Edmonton native Katherine Plouffe. "We kept our composure when we were down. Great to play vs. a team that rebounds hard, as we'll see that a lot at world's and need to do a better job of boxing out five people every time. Cuba showed they get five people on glass all game.”

Canada will now face the home country, Spain, tomorrow at 1:00pm (ET) in their last exhibition game before heading off to Turkey for the 2014 FIBA World Championship from Sept 27 to Oct 5. 

Full box score: http://baloncestoenvivo.feb.es/Game/1380686