AMSTERDAM (2012 FIBA U17 World Championship for Women) – Spain and Japan remained perfect at the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championship for Women while the Netherlands beat Australia in a crucial showdown in Group B.
Spain improved to 3-0 in the group with a 79-42 victory over Brazil as Yaiza Rodriguez scored 14 points while Marina Lizarazu had 11 points and Ariadna Pujol collected 11 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals.
“I think that we are playing very good because we are playing together. The key is the defense. We are very aggressive,” said Leticia Romero, who added 9 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks for the Iberians.
Spain pulled away for good in the third quarter, turning a 30-24 game into a 28-point lead after 30 minutes, 61-33.
Brazil dropped to 0-3 in the group as no player scored in double figures with Vitoria Domingos leading the way with 9 points.
Japan joined Spain atop the group with a 3-0 record with an 83-75 victory over Turkey thanks to a 10-0 run in the final three minutes.
Yunika Nakamura collected 20 points and 9 rebounds and made 6 of 6 free throws in the decisive late stretch. Ai Yamada scored 19 points while Natsumi Nagai had 13 points and Saori Miyazaki chipped in 12 points and Evelyn Mawuli collected 4 points, 8 rebounds and 3 steals.
Turkey fell to 0-3 despite Hülya Coklar collecting 20 points, 13 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 blocks. Sinem Atas added 20 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists and Melis Gülcan scored 12 points in the loss.
The hosts Netherlands came up with a crucial win by knocking off Australia 70-62 to improve to 2-1. Laura Cornelius poured in 28 points for the winners while Isabella Slim added 17 points and Lisanne de Jonge hit for 10 points.
The Dutch used some great outside shooting early to open a 25-4 lead and the cushion was trimmed to nine before the Netherlands pushed it back to 17 points. Australia again fought it down to four points late in the third quarter – 50-46 – but back to back threes made it 57-46 early in the fourth.
The Australians repeatedly got within four points but could never hit the big shot to further close the gap.
Australia dropped to 1-2 despite 23 points from Vanessa Panousis.
Monday is a rest day and Group B action will resume Tuesday with Spain playing Japan, Netherlands facing Brazil and Turkey squaring off against Australia.