The first quarter ended 23-13 in favor of the Spaniards, more dynamic at the start of the match. The Canadians were more successful in the second period to cut the difference to six points, thanks to a three-point shot from the Kia Nurse less than 10 seconds left. The two countries entered the dressing room with a score of 40-34 for the Spaniards.
The latter regained its rhythm to start the second half. Dominating from within, they constantly attacked the basket to increase their progress. At one point, they had an excellent efficiency rate of 72% indoors, leaving their opponents with little wiggle room. The Canadians took time to adapt and create movement when they had the ball. They were 47-60 behind after three quarters.
Competing in its second Olympics, the Kia Gull kept Canada’s hopes alive with its ocean shot. The Ontarians scored four good shots for three during the match and finished with a total of 14 points.
The Spanish players’ brilliance was the best in the fourth quarter, but nothing seemed to be able to stop them. The Rio Games silver medalists maintained their lead by responding to the attacks of both Canadians to remain undefeated in Tokyo.
We would have preferred it to be played with our handsCanada coach Lisa Thomides admitted at the start of the quarter-final qualifiers. Even if this wasn’t the expected outcome, she emphasized the fighting ability her subjects had shown throughout the match.
We won two quarters. Unfortunately, we twice found ourselves in difficult situations. Our team played with enthusiasm to get back on the slope and we closed the gap, but they made some shots on the key points. We lacked the enthusiasm to start the third quarter and we must not allow Spain to dominate.
Asto N’Dour was her team’s top scorer with 20 points, in addition to providing a good performance in defense. The middle recovered 11 rebounds, blocked 3 shots and made 2 steals.
Also note the performance of captain Cristina Ovina who scored 15 points and made 7 assists.
The Canadians now have to wait for the results of the other matches to see if they will qualify for the quarter-finals reserved for the top eight nations. They lost their first duel 72-68 against the Serbs before defeating the South Koreans 74-53.
Slow starts in the first and third quarters, that’s probably what made the difference to this game. We showed a lot of fighting spirit and intensity. Now we can just sit back and be patient. There’s nothing else we can do in Olympic Village anyway, the conclusion of Kia Nurse.
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