USA Wins A Pair

The International Sports Festival tipped in San Diego Tuesday afternoon. Courtesy of USA Basketball Media Relations, here are some recaps and box scores from the first day of action.


Box Score

With the help of 21 points from Bill Walker and 20 from Kyle Singler, the USA White Team (1-0) used a strong defense, hot shooting and an 18-0 second-quarter run to breeze past China (0-1) 112-59 in a game in which the Americans forced 25 turnovers and shot 58.8 percent from the floor.

Already ahead 30-16 at the end of the first quarter, thanks in part to Walker's 11 points, USA White kept up its stingy defense and lights-out shooting in the second quarter and reeled off 18 consecutive points. The 18-0 run was capped by a Singler break-away dunk that pushed the lead to 52-23.

The U.S. White team entered the locker room at the half ahead 57-27 behind 58.5 percent shooting from the floor, while forcing 15 China turnovers. The USA defense, behind Greg Oden's four blocked shots in the first half, limited China to 33.3 percent shooting.

"It starts with defense," said USA White head coach Pat Fitterer. "This group is so good defensively. We put so much pressure on China we got them on their heels. Our goal was to come out and play really well and win each quarter."

USA White came out at the start of the second half playing as well as it had in the first. Walker sparked a 9-0 run, scoring six points on three dunks to put the Americans ahead 70-31 with 6:01 remaining in the third. The USA White Team improved its field goal shooting to 59.0 percent in the second half while out-rebounding the taller Chinese squad 47-27 for the game.

"The team came out with a lot of intensity from the start," said Oden. "My mind set coming into the game was just to play hard. Blocked shots come along, rebounds come along when you play hard."

Walker scored his team high 21 points on 10-of-12 shooting and grabbed six rebounds to led six USA White players in double figures. Singler posted 20 points, Oden had 16 and a team high six blocks, Darrell Arthur added 11, while Michael Conley and Javaris Crittenton each scored 10. Paul Harris and Bryce Webster grabbed eight rebounds apiece.

Chen Jiangua, a 6-2 guard, led China with 14 points. Zhou Peng, a 6-10 center, De Lehei, a 6-11 forward and Han Shuo, a 6-6 guard, scored 12, 10 and 10 points, respectively.


Box Score

In first day action of the five-day tournament, the USA Red Team (1-0) behind 15 points from Gerald Henderson rolled past Canada (0-1) 82-64.

The USA Red Team, relied on relentless end line to end line defensive pressure that forced 35 turnovers in the victory. Additionally, the United States never trailed in the contest and led for all but 1:37.

Owning a 25-16 lead after the first quarter, the USA Red squad began the second quarter with a 9-1 run and held Canada without a field goal for the first 4:23 of the period. The USA Red's defense was just too much for the Canadian team as the U.S. held Canada to only 11 points in the quarter to take a 17 point lead, 44-27, at the break.

Canada kept the U.S. Red team from blowing the game wide open. The Canadians cut the U.S. lead to 14 points halfway through the third quarter, however, the USA refused to relinquish momentum or the lead, and extended its advantage to 24 points after posting a 7-0 run just before the end of the third quarter.

"They are a very well-coached team," said U.S. Blue's Henderson, a 6-5 guard from Blue Bell, Penn. "They played hard. We got on them defensively which I thought rattled them early, so we were able to get off to a quick lead."

Henderson and Canada's Scott Brittain led all scorers in the game with 15 points. Two other players, forward Bryan Davis and Brook Lopez also scored in double figures for the U.S with 12 and 11 points, respectively. Lopez was also tied for the team lead with Damion James with eight rebounds each.

"Our effort was good," said Red head coach Otis Hughley. "Gerald did a good job tonight. He's just steady. That's 15 (points) I didn't know he had. He's just steady and solid. He's a guy you never worry about."

Forward Olu Ahaolou and guard Junior Cadougan also scored in double figures tonight for Canada, totaling 12 and 11 points, respectively, while center Robert Sacre pulled down nine boards to lead all rebounders.


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