Aug. 1, 2012
LONDON -- The USA women improved to 3-0 in Group A play at the 2012 Olympic Games, defeating previously-unbeaten Turkey, 89-58, at Olympic Park Basketball Arena on Wednesday night.
After generating double-doubles in points and rebounds in her first two contests at this Olympiad, former Lady Vol Candace Parker played more of a support role this time around. In 15 minutes of duty, she contributed two points, four rebounds, three blocks and a pair of assists. Another former Lady Vol, Tamika Catchings added four rebounds and a block in 18 scoreless minutes. The USA's Angel McCoughtry had scoring honors for the game, finishing with 18 points.
The Americans struggled to build a lead in the opening quarter, managing only a 19-16 advantage after the first 10 minutes of action and overcoming a four-point deficit to do so. A 22-10 spree by the U.S. women in the second frame built the lead to 41-26 at break and suggested that the rout was on.
Turkey (2-1), however, wasn't compliant with that plan, opening the third stanza with a 14-5 run and cutting the UT advantage to 46-40 at the 4:04 mark and moving to within five with 2:42 showing on the clock. Realizing there was still work to be done to earn a victory, Team USA closed out the quarter with a 13-2 explosion to seize a 63-47 lead entering the fourth period.
Much like the second frame, the fourth quarter was all USA. The Red, White & Blue outscored Turkey 26-11 to put the finishing touches on the win. The final frame helped the USA boost its shooting percentage to 54 percent for the game, while Turkey slipped to 29 percent and finished with only 14 field goals. The Americans also were bolstered by connecting on 20-of-23 charity tosses for the contest.
Only the Americans and China remain unbeaten in Group A at 3-0, while France and Russia have perfect marks in Group B. The USA will return to action on Friday in its fourth Group A Preliminary Round game. The Americans face a third-straight 5:15 p.m. Eastern tip, this time tangling with the Czech Republic (1-2).
For access to bios for Catchings and Parker and a game schedule, please go to the UT Olympics Website.