Spain, Greece Advance At Worlds
Brazil's Marcus Vieira, right, fights for a position on the court with Spain's Rudy Fernandez during the Group A Basketball World Cup match between Brazil and Spain in Granada, Spain, Monday Sept. 1, 2014. The 2014 Basketball World Cup competition will take place in various cities in Spain from Aug. 30 through to Sept. 14. (AP Photo/Daniel Tejedor)
Spain and Greece are headed to the round of 16, and Senegal is in position to join them after shaking up Group B with an upset Monday at the Basketball World Cup.
The Spanish earned a trip to their capital by routing Brazil in a battle of unbeatens to take the lead in Group A, while Greece clinched the first spot in Madrid by improving to 3-0 earlier in the day.
The United States was off, a night after rallying from a halftime deficit to beat Turkey.
The Chicago Bulls’ Pau Gasol had 26 points and nine rebounds for Spain in its 82-63 victory over Brazil in Granada. The hosts had already routed Iran and Egypt by a combined 67 points, but have difficult first-round games remaining against France and Serbia following Tuesday’s rest day.
Greece matched Spain for the overall best record by beating Puerto Rico 90-79 in Seville, and has won each of its games by double digits. The Greeks, who needed a wild card into the tournament, will next face a Croatia team that was stunned 77-75 Sunday by Senegal.
That dropped the Croatians (2-1) into a three-way tie for second with Argentina and the Senegalese, who pulled off the kind of surprising victory that Ukraine coach Mike Fratello predicted there would be more of a day earlier.
The Americans avoided what would have been the biggest upset by beating Turkey 98-77 on Sunday, pulling away after trailing 40-35 at halftime and leading only 66-60 after three quarters. They return today to face New Zealand, which is 0-2 but was beating Turkey for nearly most of its opening game before faltering down the stretch.
“I saw the Turkey game, but I was watching Turkey when I was watching, and it looked like New Zealand should have won, or was in a good position,” U.S. coach Mike Krzyzewski said. “So if they had a chance to beat Turkey, they must be pretty good.”
Group D was also off Monday. Those teams are back in action today, while Groups A and B are off. Every team plays Wednesday and Thursday to wrap up pool play, with the round of 16 beginning Saturday in Madrid and Barcelona.
Sky 86, Fever 84 (2 ot)
Rosemont, Ill. — Sylvia Fowles scored 27 points and Chicago beat Indiana in two overtimes to even the best-of-three Eastern Conference finals on Monday.
Courtney Vandersloot had 18 points and Allie Quigley added 16 for the fourth-seeded Sky, who rallied from 14 points down to earned their first home playoff victory. Both of Chicago’s victories in the first round against Atlanta came on the road.
All-Star Elena Delle Donne had just nine points on 4-for-11 shooting but her layup gave the Sky a four-point lead with 1:41 left in the second overtime.
Shavonte Zellous scored 20 points, Tamika Catchings had 16 and Erlana Larkins added 15 for the second-seeded Fever, the 2012 WNBA champions who are trying to reach the WNBA Finals for the third time in six years.
Game 3 is Wednesday in Indianapolis.