Another day at the FIBA World Cup, another easy victory for Team U.S.A.
The United States beat the Dominican Republic to the tune of 106-71 on Wednesday. The Dominicans do not have anyone on the roster that has even played a minute in the NBA, so the game wasn’t ever expected to be much of a contest.
College basketball fans would likely recognize Edgar Sosa, who was a member of Louiville’s Elite Eight run in 2009. Sosa has been playing overseas professionally since his graduation, and is actually the youngest member on the Dominican Republic’s current roster for his year’s FIBA World Cup.
The United States limped through the first quarter with a 25-22 lead, as has largely been their modus operandi in the early stages of the competition. They followed that up with an impressive second frame, however, using a 31-19 advantage to propel them to a big halftime lead that they would never relinquish en route to a 35-point victory.
Once again, a big man led the Americans in scoring. It was Kennth Faried’s turn, as he led the squad with a modest 16 points on 8 of 11 shooting and chipping in six rebounds. Anthony Davis posted a 10 and 7, while the bench put up their own impressive box scores.
DeMarcus Cousins had a remarkable stat line: 13 points on a perfect 5 of 5 shooting, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 6 steals with just one turnover. DeMar DeRozan shot 5 of 8 from the field in scoring 11 points and also tallying 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals when it was all said and done.
Everyone on the roster scored at least four points, and the team shot 56.4% from the floor as a whole. The only iffy spot was the long-rage not-so-marksmanship.
The United States shot just 6 of 21 from beyond the (shorter-than-NBA) arc, good for 28.6%. Stephen Curry has struggled thus far at the FIBA World Cup, and the U.S. will need him to begin to pitch in, along with Golden State teammate Klay Thompson and James Harden if they want to ensure that they keep the streak against international competition intact.
The roster as a whole isn’t a great threat from deep, but it will need to at least hold it’s own as they advance through the tournament.
Next up is an 10:30 Central Time showdown with Ukraine on ESPN2. After Thursday’s games, the next round will get underway.