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Despite Loss, Smith, Canada Advance at World Championships

Kim Smith scored 10 points against Australia Thursday.

Kim Smith scored 10 points against Australia Thursday.

Sept. 15, 2006

SAO PAOLO, Brazil -- Canada's record dropped to 1-2 at the 2006 FIBA World Basketball Championship for Women Thursday, after falling 97-65 to Australia. Despite the loss, Canada finished third in pool "B" action and will advance to the next round on Saturday, with an opponent yet to be determined.

Former University of Utah star Kim Smith scored 10 points in Canada's loss to the Australians.

Canada held tough against the third-ranked Australian team early, with the score tied 4-4 after three minutes. Australia began to pull away late in the quarter, going on an 8-0 run and opening up a 13-point lead, 27-16. A strong second quarter saw Canada go on a 12-0 run to cut the Australian lead to two points, 32-30, midway through the period. Isabelle Grenier and Teresa Kleindienst hit a pair of long three-pointers as part of the streak. Kleindienst finished the half in style driving the basket, drawing the foul, and sinking the ensuing foul shot to cut the Australian advantage to 41-39 at halftime.

The high-tempo, back-and-forth affair continued in the third quarter, with Australia slowly adding to their lead. Canada kept the Australian advantage to less than 11 points for most of the quarter but a late 10-0 run by the Aussies saw them open a 19-point advantage, 66-47, heading into the final stanza of play.

Australia continued to stretch its lead in the fourth quarter, going on a 10-0 run and outscoring Canada 31-18 in the period. They also connected on five three-pointers.

Canada finished the game shooting 15-of-44 from the field compared to 37-of-73 by Australia. However Canada finished a strong 29-of-36 from the free-throw line while Australia was 11-of-13 from the charity stripe.

Canadian head coach Allison McNeill was pleased that her team was able to keep up with the Australians, ranked No. 3 in the world, even if just for a half.

"I thought we competed very hard, and at this point in our development program, we don't have the depth or size to compete with them for 40 minutes," McNeill said

Kleindienst paced the Canadian side with 19 points and a team-high four assists. Tammy Sutton-Brown was Canada's second leading scorer with 17 points and a team-high seven rebounds. Smith was Canada's other double-digit scorer with 10 points.




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