The U.S. captured the FIBA U18 Women’s Americas Championship for a 10th straight time Sunday, overcoming their first challenge of the tournament, by Canada, to win 82-77.
Recent Cathedral Catholic High grad Isuneh Brady finished the game with eight points and 15 rebounds to help her team win the gold medal in Buenos Aires.
Cotie McMahon led the way with 22 points as three other teammates scored in double digits.
Against Canada, Team USA never established the huge advantages they maintained in last week’s wins over Columbia, Puerto Rico, El Salvador and Mexico.
They led by four after the first quarter, then by 10 at the half, but the Canadians returned to the court strong and outscored the Americans by six in the third.
It wasn’t enough, even though the U.S. had a three-minute scoring drought to end the game. The Canadians, behind 80-65 at the time, cut the gap to just five as the U.S. only made two free throws down the stretch. Canada, however, failed to make a shot in the final 30 seconds, preserving he U.S. win.
Argentina won the bronze medal with a 54-50 win over Brazil.
The U.S. had cruised through Sunday, and defeated Brazil 84-40 in their semi-final.
The U.S., undefeated in six games at the tournament, averaged 87 points, followed closely by Canada at almost 81 per game. Each team far outpaced the competition – the next best, Argentina, averaged just 56 points.
Brady, 18, who scored nine against Brazil, averaged 13 points a game for the championship, shooting 65.5%. She added 7.5 rebounds per game and 1.7 assists.
She is bound for Connecticut in the fall.