Aug. 29, 2005
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (from USA Basketball) - The USA men's team advanced to the second round of the 2005 FIBA Americas Men's World Championship Qualifying Tournament in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Second round play begins Tuesday.
Attempting to earn one of the Americas' four qualifying berths (in addition to Argentina who already qualified by virtue of winning the 2004 Olympics) for the 2006 FIBA World Championship that will be held in Japan (Aug.19-Sept. 3, 2006), the U.S. begins second round play tied for second in the overall standings with a 2-1 record.
"Everything kind of starts over now. I think everything is fairly even to begin with all the teams. Everybody is tired, everybody has a loss, so we just have to go play and now it's who plays the best from here on out," said USA head coach Mo McHone.
Brazil, Venezuela, the United States and Panama advanced from preliminary round Group A, while Canada, Group A's fifth-place finisher, was eliminated. In Group B, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Uruguay advanced into the second round, with Mexico finishing fifth and eliminated.
Under the tournament format, the advancing teams results only against teams advancing carry into the second round standings. The teams begin second round play with Argentina owning a 3-0 record, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, the USA and Venezuela all carry 2-1 records into the second round, Puerto Rico starts second round action 1-2, while Panama and Uruguay will start 0-3.
In the preliminary games, the U. S. opened with two wins - over Panama (94-72) and Brazil (96-94), but over the weekend, the USA dropped two games, losing to Canada 92-76 and Venezuela 71-70. In four-game cumulative U. S. statistics, Bruin great Tyus Edney (UCLA '95) has started all four games at point guard and is averaging 22.5 minutes, 7.3 points (No. 6 on the team), 1.3 rebounds, a team-high 3.3 assists and 1.3 steals. He's shooting .500 (11-22) from the field, .250 (1-4) from three-point range and .750 (6-8) from the foul line.
The second round features the four advancing teams from each preliminary group playing the teams from the other preliminary group who they have not met.
Playing the four second round games over four days, the United States returns to action Aug. 30 facing host Dominican Republic (9:30 p.m. ET), then plays Argentina on Aug. 31 (7:00 p.m. ET), Uruguay on Sept. 1 (4:30 p.m. ET) and the U.S. squad will close second round play against Puerto Rico on Sept. 2 (7:00 p.m. ET).
The top four finishing teams after the completion of the second round will advance to the semifinals on Sept. 3. The tournament's gold and bronze medal games are slated for Sunday, Sept. 4.
For more information, please go to www.usabasketball.com.