HIROSHIMA (FIBA World Championship
) - Eduardo Mingas scored 27 points and grabbed 12 rebounds as Angola beat New Zealand 95-73 to advance to the Final 16 of the 2006 FIBA World Championship.
Mingas made his first nine shots on his way to 20 points in the first half. Joaquim Gomes added 20 for the African champions while Antonio Carvalho spear-headed the attack from outside with 12 points on four three-pointers.
Angola move on the knock-out stages in Saitama with a perfect 3-0 record.
"I am so satirfied. My players worked hard and listened to the coaches. We all played very passionately on the defensive side of the ball, and that was important," said Angola coach Alberto Carvalho.
Pero Cameron paced the Tall Blacks with 17 points and Kirk Penney scored 15 and Phill Jones 11.
"We're really disappointed. We let them get the jump on us. And it was too difficult trying to close a 20-point deficit," Cameron said.
"This is the big stuff and we we're not stepping up."
Miguel Lutonda and Mingas each hit three-pointers as Angola used a 12-0 run to pull ahead 17-4 early. The Africans were ahead 21-12 after the first 10 minutes.
Angola used their excellent outside shooting to push ahead 35-17 as they drained five three pointers. The advantage was 49-32 going into the break.
A Mingas free throw made it 62-42 before New Zealand attempted a comeback, pulling it to within 62-49. But Tab Baldwin's team didn't help their cause by missing five free throws in the closing moments of the third period, which ended 69-55 for Angola.
Gomes scored two baskets in side to push Alberto Carvalho's team ahead 76-57 with 7:14 remaining.
Jones hit three three-pointers and Cameron added one of his own as New Zealand tried to fight back into the game. But it was too little too late.
"Mingas played a great game. It was important for him to step up. New Zealand was playing very strong and he took over the game," said Angola guard Carlos Almeida said of Mingas, who was the MVP of the Angola league for the past three years.
Baldwin didn't really have any answers for his team's performance.
"None of (the losses) were good enough. We have come here with the mindset to play our best basketball but we haven't been able to do it. We can look for excuces all day," he said.
After a day off Tuesday, New Zealand face Japan and Angola take on Spain. By DAVID HEIN
Exclusive for FIBA