Belgian women’s basketball beat Puerto Rico 68-65 on Saturday in their third group game at the World Cup in Sydney, Australia. In doing so they achieved their second victory, although it did not go smoothly.
The Cats started out in fifth place in the FIBA classification as the favorite against No. 17, but they weren’t able to distance themselves from their opponents throughout the match. White people missed a lot of shots for it. After the first quarter, the score was 12-11, and in the first half the two teams tied: 31-31.
After the break, the difference remained minimal, although the Cats were allowed to start the last 10-minute quarter by a single point (49-48). This became troubling, as national coach Valery Demore’s team eventually won by three points.
Kyara Linskens became the Belgian’s top scorer with 24 points. She also scored 13 rebounds. Antonia Delery finished with 13 points, Emma Messmann had 12 rebounds, 11 assists and 6 points. Cats finished as low as 38 percent (29 of 77).
Earlier this week, Belgium’s Katz lost their opening match against the United States, the frontrunner, 87-72 and then beat South Korea 84-61. In Group A they will play Bosnia and Herzegovina on Monday (3.30 am) and against China on Tuesday (5.30 am).
Earlier today, the United States beat China 77-63 and was the first to get a ticket to the quarter-finals. The Koreans were too strong for the Bosnians with a 99-66. The top four in the group qualify for the quarter-finals.
In 2018, on their first entry to the World Cup, the Cats finished off the podium in fourth place in Tenerife.
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