05 - 11
June 2023
Game Report
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Semifinals are set as USA, Argentina, Puerto Rico and Canada qualify to FIBA U17 World Cup 2024

YUCATAN (Mexico) – Friday's action at Poliforum Zamna in Yucatan (Mexico) saw Argentina, Puerto Rico, United States and Canada advance to the semifinals of the 2023 FIBA Americas U16 Championship.

These countries also punched their tickets to the 2024 FIBA U17 World Cup.

Here's a look at how the games unfolded:

Argentina 74 - 67 Dominican Republic

Behind an otherworldly performance from Iván Pratto, Argentina defeated the Dominican Republic in the first game of the day to advance to the semifinals.

The 6'10 power forward, playing in his second FIBA Americas U16 Championship after being part of the 2021 roster as a 14-year-old, dropped a whopping 28 points, 25 rebounds and 6 blocks.

Pratto dominated on both ends of the court, draining a pair of clutch free throws in the final seconds and pulling down the rebound that essentially sealed the victory.

The Pallacanestro Varese (Italy) player shot 11/20 from the field, including 2/5 from long distance, was instrumental in helping Argentina to a 38-28 edge in points in the paint and a 55-48 advantage on the boards.

The South Americans held a 10-point lead at the end of the third quarter before D.R. roared back in the fourth thanks to excellent outside shooting from Eugri Germán. The Dominican sniper scored 9 of his 11 points in the final stanza thanks to 3 three-pointers, at one point getting his team within 2 points.

Argentina regained their composure after Tyler Kropp grabbed and offensive rebound, got fouled and hit 2 free throws to double the lead. Kropp finished with 15 points and 15 rebounds, while Martín Torriani added 14 points and 4 assists.

Dominican Republic was led by Richard Fernández's 21. Lucas Morillo added 13 points and 8 rebounds, and Eliel Ulloa had 12 and 7, but the team shot 27.7 overall from the field and had just 3 assists on 23 made baskets.

Brazil 72 - 83 Puerto Rico

In the tournament's first game to go to overtime, Puerto Rico shocked Brazil to advance to the semifinals.

The boricuas completed a furious comeback after being down 12 points early in the fourth quarter and closed the game on a 41-18 run that included a near-flawless 16-5 edge in overtime.

Despite shooting just 32.1 percent from the field and being outrebounded 66-52, Puerto Rico managed to pull through thanks to an excellent defensive performance that included turning Brazil's 23 turnovers into 30 points.

As he has all week, guard Felipe Quiñones led the charge, scoring 12 of his 19 points between the fourth quarter and overtime. He also had 9 rebounds, 7 assists and 5 steals in a masterful showing for his country.

Quiñones was one of 5 different P.R. players in double digits, with big man Justin Roman providing a massive 16-point, 19-rebound double-double and Richard Rosa (18 points), Rognny Santiago (11) and Alexander Montes (10) joining them.

The ending was a disappointment for Brazil, who seemed in control throughout most of the game and led at one point by 16 points.

However, their combination of fouls (23) and turnovers (27) allowed Puerto Rico to hang on just long enough to make their comeback. And in the overtime period, the wheels fell off as the boricuas rode their positive momentum to the final buzzer.

Center Fabricio De Freitas had 16 points, 11 rebounds and 3 blocks and Mathias Vazquez (11 points and 10 boards) also notched a double-double. Forward Patrick Perna added 14 points and Matheus Monteiro chipped in 13 off the bench.

USA 123 - 45 Uruguay

Team USA kept their torrid pace, defeating Uruguay, 123-45, to advance to the semifinals, where they'll face Puerto Rico for a spot in the gold medal game.

Sharman White's squad led wire-to-wire and shot 61.4 percent from the field, assisting on 35 of 54 made baskets.

Team captain Koa Peat led the way with 22 points (10/13 from the field) and 7 rebounds and was one of six players scoring in double digits.

Some of their usual suspects also had great games, from Darryn Peterson (18 points and 5 assists) to Cameron Boozer (16 points and 8 rebounds). Reserve guard Caleb Holt also notched his first double-double of the tournament, pouring 14 points and 10 boards in 22 minutes.

Uruguay, still winless in the event, just couldn’t match their opponent's firepower. They got 16 points from Joaquín Taboada and a pair of three-pointers from Santiago Tricot, but their offense generated just 5 free throws, committed 43 turnovers and was held to 31.2 percent from the field.

Team USA's 123 points were a tournament-high, surpassing the 122 they scored against Mexico on Wednesday.

Uruguay will face Brazil on Saturday on the 5-8 bracket.

Canada 89 - 63 Mexico

Canada leveraged a loud offensive explosion in the fourth quarter to get past Mexico, 89-63, and advance to the tournament's semifinals.

Mexico had cut what had been a consistent double-digit lead to 7 points toward the end of the third quarter, but Chris Cheng's guy came out firing on all cylinders in the final period to quickly put the game out of reach.

Big man Paul Osaruyi scored 8 of his 22 points in the fourth to lead Canada to the next round, where they'll face Argentina for a spot in the final. He added 10 rebounds.

Quentin Ethier got them going in the first half and had 11 of his 14 before halftime, while point guard Jordan Charles flirted with a triple-double and finished with 8 points, 6 rebounds and 11 assists for Canada, who shot 42.3 percent from the field, including a torrid 10/24 from beyond the arc.

Mexico was mostly a one-man show, as power forward Karim López did his best to keep them within striking distance. López 23 points on 6/12 from the field, including 3/6 from downtown, and 8/14 from the charity stripe.

Edgar Grande joined him down the stretch, scoring 7 of his 14 in the final quarter, but the help came too little too late as Canada dominated the interior (36-22 in the paint) and pulled away.

The host country will now face the Dominican Republic on Saturday in the 5-8 bracket.