USA & Canada Open Bracket Play With Wins at FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup – GoCreighton.com - Techy Hunters

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Wednesday, July 7, 2021

USA & Canada Open Bracket Play With Wins at FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup – GoCreighton.com

LATVIA – The United States and Canada both improved to 4-0 at the 2021 FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup on Wednesday, as Creighton freshmen Ryan Kalkbrenner and Ryan Nembhard helped keep their countries in contention for a gold medal with victories to open bracket play.

Should both squads win their next game on Friday, the US and Canada are on a collision course to meet on Saturday in the semifinal round.

#2 Canada 86, #12 Puerto Rico 56 – Box ScoreVideoHighlights
Canada rolled past Puerto Rico on Wednesday by an 86-56 count as Ryan Nembhard contributed a double-double with 13 points and 10 assists. His alley-oop pass in transition to teammate Bennedict Mathurin also was the No. 3 Play of the Day at the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup, the second straight contest he’s claimed a spot in the top-five.

Nembhard played 23 minutes and shot 5-for-11 on the night, including 3-for-5 from deep. He continues to lead the team with 6.5 assists per game and is also second on the club with 14.8 points and 1.3 steals per contest at the 2021 FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup. Through four games, Nembhard ranks first in assists, tied for fourth in double-doubles (1), sixth in three-point percentage (.467) and tied for eighth in scoring among the 184 participants to appear so far in the event.

Caleb Houstan (Michigan) and Elijah Fisher both scored 14 points to pace five men in double-figures for the Canadians, who won the rebound battle 57-39.

Puerto Rico’s Rafael Pinzon finished with 12 points, three rebounds and three assists. He’ll be a freshman at St. John’s this winter.

Ranked No. 2 in the world in the U19 rankings, Nembhard and Team Canada return to the court on Friday at 4:00 a.m. Central with a quarterfinal round game vs. No. 3 Spain (3-1) that can be watched on ESPN+. 

#1 United States 132, #19 Korea 60 – Box ScoreVideoHighlights
Ryan Kalkbrenner had 12 points, five rebounds and three blocked shots to help the United States defeat Korea, 132-60. The US scored the first seven points and have still not trailed in four games at this year’s World Cup.

Kalkbrenner made 6-of-8 shots from the floor in 15 minutes of action. His 12 points and three blocks were both personal bests in a Team USA uniform.

Through four games in Latvia, Kalkbrenner is averaging 6.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocked shots per contest under head coach Jamie Dixon (TCU). He is shooting 57.9 percent (11-19) from the field in those contests, and the US has outscored the opposition by 68 points in his 50 minutes on the floor.

The Americans had eight men score in double-figures, paced by Gonzaga-bound Chet Holmgren’s 17. The US set U19 national records for points (132), field goals (57), field goal attempts (92), rebounds (62) and assists (39) in a game.

Ranked No. 1 in the world in the U19 rankings, Kalkbrenner and Team USA return to the court on Friday in the quarterfinals at 10:00 a.m. Central with a game vs. No. 38 Senegal (2-2) that can be watched on ESPN+. 

Though both Nembhard and Kalkbrenner’s teams are idle on Thursday, Creighton will have a different freshman competing internationally as Arthur Kaluma makes his debut with the Uganda National Team in an AfroBasket 2021 qualifier vs. Morocco.
 

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