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A’ja Wilson leads the U.S. team 81-72 in the Olympics opener, Sue Bird hits an assist – Hoopfeed.com

the6man Jul 27

Photo: FIBA

Under the leadership of A’ja Wilson, who was selected for the Olympic Games for the first time, the US team defeated a determined Nigerian team 81-72 in the first round of the Tokyo Summer Olympics preliminaries.

Although Nigeria led 20-17 in the first ten minutes, the second game was a different story. Even with a large number of turnovers, the American team managed to get rid of D’Tigress and allowed their opponents to maintain zero points for more than 8 minutes. With 17 points unanswered, the US team took a double-digit lead 37-25 after Breanna Stewart’s three-pointer. The momentum continues. However, Nigeria’s Adaora Elonu (Adaora Elonu) ended the half with his own three-pointer, helping her team close the gap. At the intermission, the US team led 44-32.

The US team maintained the lead in the third quarter, beating Nigeria 26-18. Although D’Tigress never surpassed the United States, they did manage to narrow the difference to within 8 points late in the fourth quarter. The United States reacted immediately, shutting Nigeria out.
This victory marked the 50th consecutive victory of the US Senior Women’s National Team.

Wilson had a double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds. Brittney Griner also had a double-double, scoring 13 points and 10 rebounds. Diana Taurasi (Diana Taurasi) returned from recovery from a hip injury and added 10 points. Five-time Olympic and four-time gold medalist Subodh sent an impressive 13 assists. In the competition, she set a century record for assists in her Olympic career, completing the game 102 times.

“Su is like wine, it will get better over time,” said US coach Dawn Starley. Previously, Bird’s highest number of assists in the game was 9 times, which was a feat she accomplished during the 2016 Rio Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics.

“Its significance is that I always try to make the right game at all times,” Bird told FIBA ​​about her achievements.

Ezinne Kalu leads Nigeria with 16 points and 6 rebounds. Temple University graduate Victoria Macaulay added 11 points. Former Arizona State University outstanding Promise Amukamara scored 10 points and provided 4 assists. Texas A&M graduate Elonu was a member of the 2011 NCAA Division I national championship team and contributed 10 points.

The U.S. team will return to Group B in Friday’s game against Japan. Nigeria played against the French team on the same day.

  • Group A: Canada, Serbia, South Korea, Spain
  • Group B: France, Japan, Nigeria, the United States
  • Group C: Australia, Belgium, China, Puerto Rico

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This post is written by Cheryl Coward


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