After not seeing action in 2017, Team USA is headed into the quarterfinal stage of the 2018 FIBA 3X3 Women’s World Cup as it swept Pool C in the final day of the group stages, Monday at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
The Americans – one of the youngest squads in the tournament – earned their fourth victory at the expense of defending champion Russia, 21-13. Sabrina Ionescu led USA with 11 points spiked by a pair of two-pointers.
“I’m really proud with how far we’ve come,” said Ionescu, who will turn 21 tomorrow, June 12.
The veteran-laden Russian unit will still advance in the quarterfinals as it finished second in Pool C with a 3-1 record. The world powerhouse was on a three-game winning streak until the United States got in its way.
Going home are Andorra, Uganda, and Iran, which was on the verge of a winless campaign but was able to overturn it after a 21-12 victory over Andorra. The Andorrans were the only winless team in the group.
In the other pool, Czech Republic and Italy will head into the next round as they both carry 3-1 cards.
Czech Republic finished first in Pool A, as it defeated the Italians in an exciting match, 21-20, thanks to Giulla Riulli’s game-winning free throw.
The Czechs are definitely hungry to win it all this year. They were the gold medalists back in 2016, but they failed to defend their throne in the 2017 edition in France, as they bowed to eventual champion Russia in the quarters.
Turkmenistan, Malaysia, and Indonesia are out.
The quarterfinal picture will see Czech Republic versus Russia; Spain versus France; China versus Hungary; and USA versus Italy. The playoffs are set tomorrow, Tuesday, June 12, as the annual showpiece comes to a close.