SAITAMA, Japan (AP) — Breanna Stewart and the U.S. girls folk performed their most challenging basketball of the Tokyo Games, striking on a dominant efficiency that crew has been identified for over the years en route to winning six consecutive Olympic gold medals.
The Seattle Storm huge name used to be a huge motive the Americans grasp been so spectacular, scoring 20 of her 23 points within the first half as the U.S. routed the Aussies 79-55 Wednesday within the quarterfinals.
“We wanted to advance out and effect apart the tone on each ends of the bottom,” Stewart stated. “We haven’t had substantial begins to the games up to now. Here’s the quarterfinals and it’s win or slouch dwelling.”
The Americans will face Serbia on Friday within the semifinals looking out to advance to their seventh consecutive gold medal sport. The Serbians, who obtained the bronze medal within the 2016 Rio Games, rallied to beat China 77-70 within the quarterfinals.
For the first time since getting together about three weeks within the past the U.S. seemed enjoy the crew that’s obtained 53 consecutive games within the Olympics courting motivate to the 1992 Barcelona Games.
“Knockout rounds brings out a definite intensity about a crew and that performed a huge purpose in it,” stated Sue Rooster, who had 9 points and five assists. “It’s quit or die at this level. That helps. I quit contemplate we subtly grasp been taking steps within the merely path and making improvements to. We’re trending within the merely path and getting more elated.”.
At some stage within the pool games the U.S. got off to gradual begins, trailing after the first quarter in each contest. Stewart made clear that wouldn’t happen towards Australia. Trailing 5-2, she scored seven consecutive points to initiating a 19-1 race. The Americans led 26-12 after the outlet quarter as Australia had 10 turnovers within the length.
“The style she did it interior-exterior, she used to be unconscious,” U.S. coach Break of day Staley stated. “She took substantial photographs and used to be efficient. We knew Stewie can rating, however it completely used to be her defensive effort. She chased those guards round, one thing she doesn’t quit a total bunch. Deflections, blocked photographs, made plays. ravishing tickled with the all round effort she gave us.”
Australia used to be ready to win within 9 within the 2nd quarter before the U.S. closed the half with a 20-8 race to slouch up 48-27.
The Opals never threatened within the 2nd half as the lead ballooned at the motivate of Brittney Griner, who scored 10 of her 15 points within the third quarter.
The U.S. and Australia are ranked No. 1 and a pair of on this planet and generally meet later within the Olympics, however the Aussies barely certified for the quarters. They mandatory no longer lower than a 24-level victory over Puerto Rico within the final sport of pool play to advance.
The Opals grasp never beaten the U.S. within the Olympics, shedding to the Americans within the gold medal sport in 2000, 04 and 08. The Australians also lost within the semifinals of the 1996 and 2012 Olympics to the U.S.
They grasp been procuring for a original consequence in Japan. The teams performed in Las Vegas final month in an exhibition sport and Australia pulled off the upset victory. But the Americans wanted to make sure what came about in Vegas, stayed in Vegas.
“Haven’t had surely the kind of in awhile,” Diana Taurasi, who didn’t play in that sport as she used to be recovering from a hip hurt, stated of the elated win.
Leilani Mitchell scored 14 points to lead Australia, which performed without center Liz Cambage and ought to host the World Championship next year in Sydney. The 6-foot-8 Cambage without warning left the crew before practicing camp, citing psychological well being issues.
“I contemplate we can toughen quite a bit,” Australia coach Sandy Brondello stated.
Stewart stated she had talked at comply with about playing in five Olympics enjoy Taurasi and Rooster grasp. She’s competing in her 2nd in Tokyo. She thinks she has one advantage over the two vets who are 39 and 40.
“If I’m a five-time Olympian I’ll be 37,” she stated. “I’m younger than the two of them so it’s doable.”
GIVING IT A TRY
Australia’s Stephanie Talbot, who is on the WNBA’s Seattle Storm. performed after lacking the crew’s final sport towards Puerto Rico. She easiest performed just a few minutes towards China after lacking the opener towards Belgium due to an injured foot. She examined it out before the U.S. sport and performed 16 minutes, scoring four points.
The Australia males’s crew will face the U.S. males within the semifinals on Thursday. Most of the American males’s crew arrived staunch before the half to stare the girls folk’s crew play.
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