U-19 basketball team lose to Mali in World Cup round of 16
The Korean U-19 women's basketball team lost to Mali at the U-19 Women's Basketball World Cup on Wednesday at Olah Gabor Sports Hall in Debrecen, Hungary, missing out on a chance to advance to the quarterfinals.
After dropping its first two group stage matches against reigning bronze medalist Spain, 87-37, and France, 92-35, Korea pulled off a close win against Brazil, 80-74, on Tuesday.
After tying the first quarter 13-13, Korea allowed the Brazilian side to take a one-point lead at the end of the second quarter, but Korea came back to outscore Brazil by 10 points in the third quarter and held on to that lead until the very end.
Maiara Pereira of Brazil scored the most points in that match, with 30, topping the table for rebounds and assists, but it wasn’t enough to stop Korea. Lee Hae-ran was the top scorer for Korea with 16 points. She had 10 rebounds, three assists, five steals and one block.
The five starting members of the Korean squad — Sim Su-hyeon, Cho Soo-ah, Park So-hee, Lee and Byun So-jung — all scored more than 10 points against the Brazilian team, earning the team a ticket to the round of 16 as the third team in the group ahead of Brazil, who dropped all three group stage matches.
In the round of 16, Korea faced Mali on Wednesday but lost 87-46, failing to advance to the quarterfinals. Mali is a stronger team than Korea, having finished seventh at the 2019 U-19 World Cup, where Korea finished ninth.
However, Korea’s time in Hungary isn’t over yet, as they head to the No. 9 to No. 16 ranking round against Egypt on Friday. Egypt dropped all three matches in the group stage and is ranked 25th, lower than Korea’s 18th. If Korea beats Egypt, it will go on to play the No. 9 to No. 12 ranking round.
BY YUN SO-HYANG [firstname.lastname@example.org]