October 6, 2014

USA Women lift the 2014 World Championship in Turkey


The final against Spain was supposed to be their toughest test. But true to form, led by the best basketball players in the world, Team USA started off hot to calm any fears of an upset and defeated Spain to win their consecutive title at the 2014 FIBA World Championship for Women in Turkey on Sunday, October 5th. This was USA's ninth triumph in this tournament and another cap in the feather of the dominating American basketball system, less than a month after their men's squad had collected their own World Cup trophy in Spain.

USA, who finished the tournament with a perfect 6-0, started off the final against Spain on a 15-5 run and never looked back. Reigning WNBA MVP Maya Moore was once again the star of the show, scoring a game-high 18 points in the final. After being up 48-29 at halftime, USA finally took their foot off the accelerator, and cruised the rest of the way to a comfortable 77-64 win. This was USA's fourth triumph in the last five iterations of the tournament. Spain - the FIBA EuroBasket 2013 champs - were led in the final by Sancho Lyttle (16) in their first-ever finals appearance at the FIBA Women's Worlds.

Also on Sunday, Australia dominated hosts Turkey en route to a huge 30 point win which handed them the bronze medal at the championship. Marianna Tolo (21) boosted the Australians on the offensive end, as they limited Turkey to just four and seven points in the first and third quarters respectively. Without any consistent scoring from their end, Turkey were defeated 74-44.

A day earlier, USA had defeated Australia in the Semi-Final 82-70, with Tina Charles (18 points, 9 rebounds) and Maya Moore (16) doing most of the damage for the Americans. Although they were defeated, Australia bowed out with their heads up high after a good performance against the favourites. Erin Phillips led the Australians with 19. In the previous semi-final, Alba Torrens (28 points, 6 rebounds) helped Spain break the deadlock after three close quarters against Turkey to finally extend to a 66-56 win. With the two teams locked neck-to-neck for three quarters, Spain, who held just a two point lead before the start of the final period, outscored Turkey 25-17 in the final period to ensure the win and an appearance in the Final. Sancho Lyttle added 18 for Spain, while Turkey were led by Lara Sanders (18 points, 8 rebounds) and Nevriye Yılmaz (18).

Maya Moore - the leading scorer for the USA - was named the MVP of the tournament.

Final Standings
  • 1. USA
  • 2. Spain
  • 3. Australia
  • 4. Turkey
  • 5. Canada
All Tournament Team
  • Maya Moore (USA) - MVP
  • Brittney Griner (USA)
  • Alba Torrens (Spain)
  • Sancho Lyttle (Spain)
  • Penny Taylor (Australia)

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