SYDNEY — Alyssa Thomas and her United States teammates have been examined for the primary time within the World Cup by a bodily Serbia staff.
After a sluggish begin, the People used a dominant run spanning the half to take management of the sport and attain the semifinals once more.
Thomas had 13 factors, 14 rebounds and 7 assists to assist the U.S. beat Serbia 88-55 within the quarterfinals of the ladies’s World Cup on Thursday.
“I believe you anticipate each staff’s greatest punch within the first quarter,” Thomas stated. “We simply needed to settle into the sport and as soon as we settled in, then we have been actually in a position to break free.”
Kelsey Plum scored 17 factors and A’ja Wilson added 15 to steer the People (6-0) into the semifinals.
“They performed tremendous bodily, extra bodily than we’ve seen your entire event,” Plum stated. “Credit score to them. I felt that early-on their strain bothered us slightly bit, however we have been in a position to type of get underneath management.”
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The People had run by pool play, successful by 46.2 factors per recreation and hadn’t confronted any type of problem. Serbia (3-2) wasn’t afraid although, going proper on the U.S. The Serbians scored the primary basket of the sport — marking the primary time the People trailed within the event.
It was back-and-forth for the primary 17 minutes, with the U.S. failing to go on any main run. Then, with 2:59 left within the half and the U.S. up by 5, Kahleah Copper drove to the basket and was fouled. She landed onerous on her hip and needed to be helped off the court docket by the U.S. coaching workers. Copper, who has been a sparkplug for the U.S. in her first event, didn’t return.
“It’s too early to inform,” Reeve stated of the extent of Copper’s harm. “We’re getting her some imaging and we’ll have info later.”
Plum changed Cooper and hit the 2 free throws, beginning a 12-0 run to shut the half because the People led 50-33 on the break. Thomas had 13 factors, six rebounds, 4 assists and two steals within the opening 20 minutes.
The U.S. prolonged its run to twenty straight factors within the third quarter earlier than Serbia lastly ended an almost 8 1/2 minutes drought with a 3-pointer by Yvonne Anderson. That minimize the deficit to 22 factors. Serbia didn’t get a lot nearer after that.
Anderson led Serbia with 14 factors.
Betnijah Laney went down onerous early within the fourth quarter on a put-back. She left the sport and sat on the bench for the remainder of the sport.
“She took a tough fall,” Reeve stated. “She was within the locker room afterwards and I believe in her case it was slightly extra of it took the wind out of her.”
The victory was the twenty eighth in a row in World Cup play for the People, who haven’t misplaced for the reason that 2006 semifinals towards Russia. The Soviet Union holds the World Cup document with 56 straight wins from 1959-86.
After going unbeaten in pool play once more, the U.S. reached no less than the semifinals for the twelfth consecutive event, relationship to 1975. That yr accomplished a cycle by which the People misplaced 14 video games mixed in 4 tournaments. They’ve solely misplaced 5 video games since.
PICASSO IT WAS NOT
The U.S. had dominated the paint even with out Brittney Griner, outscoring its opponents by a median of 60.8-24.4 in pool play. Serbia held a 20-16 benefit on the half and ended up outscoring the People 28-26 within the recreation by always having two or three gamers inside to clog up the center.
“It’s a kind of stuff you received to dwell with,” Wilson stated. “Hopefully these subsequent couple of video games we are able to get again to proudly owning the paint. Serbia did an excellent job of locking it down.
Thomas, who had a triple-double in every of the final two video games within the WNBA Finals, fell simply brief once more of getting the primary one on the World Cup since Erika Dobrovicova in 1994 for the Slovak Republic towards Spain. Assists and rebounds weren’t saved earlier than 1994. Thomas had 14 factors, 9 assists and 7 rebounds within the opener towards Belgium.
Jewell Loyd returned to the U.S. beginning lineup a recreation after resting based on the staff. She had eight factors.
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