BANGKOK (FIBA U19 World Championship for Women) - For the second game running, twice defending champions the United States launched an early offence blitz and consolidated on that to win their game. And on Sunday it came in the form of a 87-71 against Spain to win the gold medal.
The US raced away with a 14-0 run, after Spaniard Marta Xargay Casademont's three-pointer had opened the scoring for the game, which effectively sealed the issue in the Americans' favour.
Spain, who were on a 8-0 winning spree before this game, including a 90-86 win over the US on the opening day, fought back rather gallantly to match their rivals in scoring and even outshot them in phases as the game progressed.
But that early blitz kept the Americans from worrying too much.
Carol Owens girls shot an incredible 83% in field goals in the first quarter (15/18) and turned the ball over thrice against four steals. Spain, on the other hand, struggled with only 26% (5/19) in the first ten minutes and the turned the ball over five times against two steals.
Spain improved to 34% as the game ended, but the Americans too had kept their own scoring ticking with an overall 44%.
Samantha Prahalis reeled in two three-pointers and scored 11 of her game's 21 points in the first quarter.
Kelsey Bone had eight of her 18 in the first quarter and Nnemkadi Ogwumike scored six of her game-high 22.
Leonor Rodriguez was the leading scorer for Spain with 21 points, after a sluggish 3 points in the first quarter.
Xargay Casademont scored nine of her 12 and Vega Gimeno all her 12 in the second half for Spain.