Pondexter Scores 14 In USA Win Over South Korea
July 4, 2009
BELGRADE, Serbia -- Quincy Pondexter tied for team-high honors with 14 points and Team USA handily beat South Korea 113-76 on Saturday in World University Games action. Team USA improved to 2-0.
Pondexter, from Fresno, Calif., added six rebounds, three assists and a steal in by far his top statistical game of the tournament.
'I just came out and tried to do my part for this team,' said Pondexter. 'Which is provide energy, play defense, rebound and find open guys, and it just came together today.'
The U.S. advances to the second round, where it will face Greece (1-1), which finished second in Group A, on July 6 (11:00 a.m. PDT), and Group A first place finisher Serbia (2-0) on July 7 (11:00 a.m. PDT).
The Koreans held an early 2-1 lead, however, it was very short lived. At 6:21 Pondexter scored off an offensive board, and the USA led by 10 points, 12-2. Korea called a time out to regroup at 5:55, but it didn't help.
The USA's defense held its opponents to 1-of-7 shooting and four turnovers over the next four minutes, while gunning to a 10-0 run that blew the game wide open, 24-4. Korea hit four from the line and made a 3-pointer, while Pondexter was perfect from the charity stripe, and the quarter ended with the USA in the lead 26-11.
The American defense continued to stifle South Korea in the second quarter, and by the end of the first half the U.S. held a commanding 56-26 lead. During the game's first 20 minutes, the Asian side was outrebounded 27-10 and managed to grab just two offensive boards.
The USA slowed in the third quarter as South Korea put the pressure on and outscored the U.S. 26-24 to close out the third stanza trailing by 28 points, 80-52.
'It was a learning experience,' said Pondexter. 'A lot of teams go through that, especially young teams that haven't been together for a long time. We don't know what it takes to put together a full 40 minutes of basketball yet, but we are chipping away at it, and we are getting closer and closer to 40 minutes of hard basketball every game.'
Both sides swapped points to open the final period, and with seven minutes to go the lead was 87-60. The Americans strung together a 13-0 highlight-reel worthy run that gave the U.S. its biggest lead of the game, 100-60, with five minutes to play, and the team sailed in for the win.
Information from this story is from USABasketball.com.
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