RIGA, LATVIA (July 9, 2021) - After a tough back-and-forth battle, Canada’s U19 Men’s National Team came out on top over Spain with a historic 81-77 quarter-final win over Spain this afternoon at the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2021.
Prior to today’s game, Canada was previously 0-6 all-time versus Spain in the tournament, dating back to 1991.
After a tight first three quarters, each of which were separated by two points or less, Canada took control of the game in the fourth, outscoring Spain 23-18 to seal the victory.
“Every team in this tournament is tough, you can’t look past any team,” said Zach Edey on the tough matchup. “We need to remember that. We just need to lock in every game.”
Edey was a difference maker at both ends of the court, scoring 24 points, to go along with 15 rebounds and 4 blocks. The 7’4” centre was especially dominant on the offensive boards as he grabbed a staggering eight rebounds, which helped Canada outscore Spain 29-9 on second chance points.
“Going to Zach (Edey) early in the second half really spaced it out for the guards and wings,” said forward Caleb Houstan. “He was killing it all game. That kind of opened it up and then our whole offence was flowing more.”
Houstan came up clutch for Canada down the stretch, scoring a game-high 25 points, including 11 points in the fourth, while recording 6 rebounds and 5 steals.
On the likelihood that Canada will be facing the USA in the semifinals, Edey shared his excitement for facing two of his teammates from Purdue (NCAA) tomorrow saying, “It’s going to be fun, it’s going to be great. I know those guys, I’ve watched them. I know they are both very good players and having a great tournament, so it should be very fun.”
Spain put up a strong effort against the Canadian team, led by Millan Jimenez (17 points, 9 rebounds).
Canada is back at it in the semifinals tomorrow, Saturday, July 10th, against rivals USA at 11:00 AM ET.
All remaining games at the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2021 will be streamed live on DAZN. The FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2021 in Latvia runs until July 11th.