RIGA, LATVIA-– After suffering a loss at the hands of the United States of America (4-0) in its last game, the Canadian Junior Men’s National Team (JMNT) regrouped and came up with an impressive 91-71 victory over Egypt (1-4) on Tuesday, July 5 in Group F of the FIBA U19 World Championship for Men.
“The guys came out on a mission right from the tip of the ball. They played well on the O-boards as well as the D-glass,” said Head Coach Greg Francis. “We were also hitting our shots, which is also key for us to advance. We ran our stuff and it showed on the scoreboard. Now we just get ready for Serbia.”
The win gives Canada an overall record of 2-3 at the tournament. Canada will now need a win tomorrow against Serbia (3-2) to be in position to advance to the quarter-final round. A win over Serbia tomorrow, combined with a win by Croatia over the United States would advance the team to the quarter-final round in 4th position in Group F, with Serbia eliminated. If the United States beats Croatia, Canada would need to win over Serbia to then be placed in three-way tie with Serbia and Croatia for positions 3, 4 and 5 in Group F, with the positioning order of the three teams then determined by point differential in head to head games amongst the three teams.
In the win over Egypt, Kevin Pangos (Holland Landing, Ont.) led the way for Canada, scoring a game-high 22 points on 6-of-9 shooting. He found his touch from long range, hitting five shots beyond the arc. Junior Lomomba (Montreal, Que.) hit chipped in with 13 points.
Olivier Hanlan (Gatineau, Que.) also contributed in a big way, almost recording a triple-double with a 16-point, seven-rebound and eight-assist effort.
Hanlan is satisfied with his performance today, but is now focused on the game tomorrow.
“I played my game, hit my shots, passed the ball well and my team helped me out,” said Hanlan. “Great team effort. Now we will prepare for Serbia.”
For Egypt, forward Marawan Mohamed poured in a team-high 16 points and seven rebounds on 5-of-10 shooting; while Omar Mohamed (no blood relation) recorded 12 points.
Egypt, who had just narrowly lost to Croatia 83-81, came into the game needing a win to survive. The JMNT quickly controlled the game, outscoring their opponents 25-14 in the opening quarter. They would continue to push the pace and hold Egypt to 35% shooting for the game; while carrying a 75-44 after three quarters, en route to a 20 point victory.
Both teams were without the services of one of their key players as Canada’s Negus Webster-Chan (Scarborough, Ont.) and Egypt’s Hatem Hossam were both sidelined due to injury.
The JMNT’s next game will be tomorrow against Serbia (3-2) with a tip-off time set for 12:15 pm local time (5:15 am ET).
PHOTO COURTESY: FIBA