The U19 USA National Team got its stiffest challenge today. And even that resulted in a 16-point USA win.Team USA bested Greece 85-69 on Monday in the first game of round two of the FIBA U19 World Championships. Northwestern's John Shurna had eight points and two rebounds in just 11 minutes, connecting on 2-of-3 field goals and 1-of-2 three-pointers.
The win over Greece gave the US a 4-0 record at the tournament, which is taking place in Auckland, New Zealand.
In running their pool play record to 3-0, Team USA saved their biggest victory, fittingly, for July 4th.That's when they laid a 112-55 throttling on Egypt. In that one, Shurna had another stellar outing: 13 points and six rebounds in just 20 minutes. He hit 4-of-7 shots -- including a pair of three-pointers -- and 3-of-7 free throws.
Through the first three games, Shurna was 8-of-14 from the floor and 3-of-8 from downtown. And he did it while averaging just 15 minutes per game.As you may expect, the US has been overwhelming its international competition. In the team's three pool-play games -- against Iran, France and Egypt -- the combined score after the first quarter was 82-34, and the average margin of victory was more than 41 points.
The second game, against the French, was the closest pool play affair, a 71-55 win. But the final belies just how in control Team USA was from the outset. They lead 35-20 at halftime and 59-37 after three quarters.Next up for Team USA is Puerto Rico on Tuesday, followed by Lithuania on Wednesday. The final round, should the US make it, begins on Friday.