2-0 for Canada’s U19 World Cup team as they defeat France, face Latvia next

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HAILEY BROWN GIVING FRENCH LESSON IN ITALY

Canada wins their second straight game, defeating France 54-45 at the FIBA U19 World Cup.

After an impressive win over Korea, the Canadians once again started out slow against a formidable France squad. Both teams exchanged leads throughout the first quarter of action.

Hailey Brown was getting the job done in both scoring and rebounding, picking up where she left off after her 10 point 13 rebound double-double in Canada’s first game.

A few holes in the Canadian defense allowed the France to score some easy buckets early on.

Laeticia Amihere entered the game and after France took the lead 10-9 and Amihere got right to it using the jab step to attack the rim for the bucket. Unfortunately, Canada would remain stuck at 11 points for the final three minutes of the first frame.

Both teams had trouble putting the ball into the net, and were equally guilty of committing turnovers. But Canada kept it close with defence and huge block by Amihere on France’s Maeva Djaldi-Tabdi.  France led 13-11 after one.

In the second, Canada moved the ball much better and once again their defense helped them to build a comfortable lead and maintain it. France’s poor shooting didn’t help their cause either. Despite a few turnovers, Canada kept the lead as they finished the final five minutes of the first half on a 10-2 run to lead 26-21 after two quarters.

After the break, France picked up the intensity but missed far too many shots, even on second chance opportunities that allowed Canada to stay in control.

Canada’s Hanna Hall brought tons of energy, flying at each player on the inside while making it difficult for any on French player to get space. Her grit and tenacity will help her excel at the next level, but she has to be cautious of her aggressiveness, which could lead her to foul trouble.

With a steady paced third quarter, Canada didn’t allow France to get any closer than three points. France and Canada played pretty evenly throughout this game, Canada with a slight advantage in few areas. After the third Canada was still up five, 41-36.

In the fourth, Brown feasted in the paint, where she scored 14 of her game-high 17 points.

Amihere’s footwork in the paint was also too much for France to handle. As the youngest player on the Canadian roster, she’ll be eligible to suit up in another U19 Worlds for Canada in two years, where she will be even more tougher to defend and more dangerous to her opponents.

Once Canada went up nine, they controlled the tempo for the remaining eight minutes of the game. The dagger for Canada against France came on yet another Amihere bucket in the paint, which gave Canada a 53-45 lead with 1:31 left in the game.

Canada’s 38 points in the paint was truly the key for the women tonight, as well as their domination on the glass, as they out rebounded France 60-40.

A major area of improvement for Canada would be to cut down on turnovers, as with their game against Korea where they committed 22, tonight they coughed the ball up 21 times. Improving their free throw percentage (44.4%), will also help Canada to be a top contender in the tournament.

The Canadian women are looking poised to finish atop their pool with Latvia up next on Tuesday, July 25 at 10:15am EST.

 Shaina Pellington of Canada

Top Performers

Hailey Brown – 17 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal

Laeticia Amihere – 12 points, 11 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 3 blocks

Aislinn Konig – 8 points, 3 rebounds, 8 assists

Alyssa Jerome – 8 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist

Written by Mark Williamson

Photo Courtesy Canada Basketball

Edited by Drew Ebanks

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