Tuesday, July 3, 2012

2012 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament Day 1.

Russia 91 - Korea 56

Russia knew they couldn't risk to lose this game against a weak opponent in Korea and they sure played like the superior team. Russia made 12 of their first 13 field goals and put the game away as early as the first quarter, they led the first quarter by 11 points and had a 19 point lead to enter the half.  Andrei Kirilenko had 16  points, Sergey Monya 14 and  Timofey Mozgov and Sasha Kaun each contributed with 12. 

Korea only had one player in double figures,  center Eric Andrin scored 15 points. 

What this means:  Russia has the day off tomorrow and only need a victory against the Dominican Republic on Wednesday to clinch or wait and see if Dominican Republic can beat Korea  tomorrow.  Russia will be safe with either of those two things happening.  Korea will fight for their life tomorrow, one more loss and they are eliminated, they will have a very tough task tomorrow, i don't see them beating the Dominican Republic. 

Greece 107 - Jordan  63

Greece dominated this game even better than Russia in the first game, and that's saying something.  Behind 8 first quarter points by Antonios Fotsis, Greece took a 33-12 first quarter lead.   The second and third quarter Greece finished with leads of  33 and 38 points.  Kostas Papanikolau ended up with 19 points and Georgios Printezis had 16, both players belong to the New York Knicks if they ever decide to play in America.  Enver Soobzokov had 14 for Jordan. 

What this means:  Jordan plays Puerto Rico tomorrow, Jordan will play for the right to stay alive.. If Puerto Rico beats them, it's over for them. Greece has the night off.

Angola 88 -  FYROM 84

This was the first surprised of the qualifiers, Macedonia looked really good during last year's Eurobasket, but didn't played like that today. Bo McCaleb scored 21 points and Pero Antic had 17, they tried to will Macedonia back into the game, getting as close as two points,  but that 13 point Angola lead was too much to overcome.  Eduardo Mingas and Olimpio Cipriano combined for 47 points in the win for Angola. 

What this means:   Tomorrow Macedonia will play against New Zealand, they need to win or they will watch the rest of the tourney from home.  New Zealand will get themselves a chance to go to the quarterfinals with a win tomorrow and eliminating Macedonia in the process.

Venezuela 71 - Nigeria 69

Venezuela had a 9 point lead in different occasions, but couldn't hold on to it and needed  every one of Greivis Vasquez 24 points to get a 2 point win. Nigeria missed a lot of easy shots that could have turned the result of this game in a different way.  David Cubillan and Gregory Echenique had 14 and 13 points respectively.   Nigeria counted with a double double from Ike Diogu (14-10) as well as 12 points from Ekene Ibekwe

What this means: Venezuela will play against Lithuania tomorrow and they will advance to the quarterfinals stage if they get the victory. Another possible way for the host to advance is to hope Lithuania beats Nigeria on Wednesday and Nigeria finishes with a 0-2 record.   Nigeria will rest tomorrow and their game against Lithuania on Wednesday is a do or die

Photo Credit: Raul Alzaga

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