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USA are the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Champions
VALDIVIA (2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship) – USA won the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 gold medal over Canada by the score of 99-84. Markelle Fultz, who scored 23 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists in the finale, was named Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the competition.
The battle of the undefeated started with a very competitive effort from the Canadians against a powerful interior presence from the USA. After 20 minutes of play, the defending champs dominated down low with a 30-10 dominating points in the paint lead. Canada compensated for this fact with by making 8 three-pointers in the first half. USA led 48-44 at halftime.
In the third USA’s depth had an impact against a limited Canada attack that had its point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander out of the game due to an injury and its leading-scorer in the tournament O’Shae Brisett in the bench with foul trouble. The defending champs were able to take 10-point lead into the fourth.
Canada’s Nickail Walker put on a show in the last ten minutes of play but it was not enough against a brilliant closing performance from Markelle Fultz and Michael Porter Jr., who scored 23 and 15 points respectively in the 99-84 win for USA. Walker finished the game with 25 points for the silver medalists.
USA wins the FIBA Americas U18 gold for the eighth time in the history of the competition and the fourth in a row.
Markelle Fultz was named Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.
The Bronze medal game was a thriller of a win for Brazil over Puerto Rico by the score of 59-58. It was a game that the Puerto Ricans led throughout, until the last two minutes when it was taken over by a 9-0 run from Brazil to close the game. A drive from Felipe Ruivo that ended with a handoff to Michael Uchendu for a basket underneath the rim sealed the deal for the Brazilian victory. Lucas Pereira had a big game for the Brazilians with 16 points and 16 rebounds in the win. For Puerto Rico, Christian Negron was huge with 14 points and 23 rebounds in the losing effort.
In the 5th place game, Argentina defeated Chile 73-68 in a dramatic game led by a distributed offensive attack from the Argentineans Leandro Lema, Lautaro Lopez and Matias Solanas who scored 13 points each in the win. Chile, a promising team that was able to compete against every team in the tournament, was led by Felipe Haase with 18 points and 6 rebounds in a losing effort.
In the 7th place game, Virgin Islands confirmed its status as the second best U18 team in Central America and the Caribbean (after Puerto Rico) by beating Dominican Republic by the score of 77-63. Nicolas Claxton was brilliant in the win with 17 points, 7 rebounds and 6 blocks. Virgin Islands had 4 players scoring in double figures. Jose Familia led Dominicana with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
The final standing of the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship:
4. Puerto Rico
7. Virgin Islands
8. Dominican Republic
To catch a replay of every game of the competition, visit youtube.com/fiba.