June27,2014(ISN)- (Toronto, Ont.) – The first consolation semifinal of the 2014 Women’s World Wheelchair Basketball Championship saw Great Britain advance with a 58-41 victory over France. The British side will move on to challenge for fifth place in the tournament.
Both sides looked tentative to begin the match and a tight opening 10 minutes concluded at 9-9. The back-and-forth action continued in the second until Great Britain broke free with eight straight points in the half’s final three minutes to lead 27-19 at the break.
The game’s see-saw play returned to open the third with France methodically chipping-away at the British lead. A 6-0 streak bridging the two final quarters drew the French side within two at 37-35, but France would get no closer. Great Britain’s offence found its form to outscore the opposition 21-8 to close-out the contest.
Watford’s Helen Freeman powered the winning side with a 29-point performance – 17 of which came in the final quarter – to accompany five rebounds and six assists. Fabienne Saint Omer-Delepine of Hazebrouck responded for France with a double-double of 18 points and a game-high 15 rebounds.
After the game, Freeman spoke to her team’s resiliency. “We came off a couple of tough losses, so I think we rebounded really well. There was still a bit of a hangover from yesterday’s game at the beginning, but once we got into our groove, we got going and scored some points.”
Great Britain will face the winner of Australia vs. China in tomorrow morning’s consolation final at 10 a.m. The loser and France will open the final day at 8 a.m. for seventh place.
Game 38: Australia to Face Great Britain in Consolation Final
Australians to play for fifth-place
The match-ups to determine the fifth-to-eighth-place finishers of the 2014 Women’s World Wheelchair Basketball Championship are set. Australia advanced to the consolation final following a close 62-57 victory over China.
Even play throughout the first quarter never saw the teams separated by more than three points. After 10 minutes, the Australians held a slim one-point lead at 13-12. A close second saw Team Australia stretch its lead to eight, but a pair from the line by China’s Yong Qing Fu brought the half to a close at 32-29.
A basket from Fu to open the third cut the deficit to one, but Australia held strong to halt the Chinese advance. Amber Merrit’s field goal with two ticks remaining in the period provided the first double-digit advantage of the game. Australia withstood a 17-12 push from Team China in the fourth to complete the victory.
Merrit, a native of Perth, led Australia with 24 points on 75 per cent shooting. Kylie Gauci – the Player of the Game added a double-double of 14 points and 10 assists without committing a turnover. China’s Jia Meng Dai answered with 21 points and seven rebounds.
The consolation final featuring Great Britain (4-3) and Australia (4-3) will tip-off at 10 a.m. France (2-5) and China (2-5) will meet to settle the seventh-place finisher at 8 a.m.