Canada’s young Pan Am Team showed no intimidation Friday morning as they faced an experienced Puerto Rican roster that boasted a mixture of NBA talent and seasoned professionals. Despite their best efforts, Canada was unable to defeat the veteran Puerto Rico squad, losing 80-58. With the loss, Canada concludes their preliminary play at the 2011 Pan-American Games.
Canada put up a valiant effort in the opening quarter, the starting unit of Phil Scrubb (Richmond, B.C.), Warren Ward (Ottawa, ON), Cole Hobin (Ashton, ON), Tyson Hinz (Ottawa, ON), and Lien Phillip (Toronto, ON) were aggressive on both sides of the ball, attacking the basket on the offensive end and playing great team defense. Ward led the team with five points at the end of the first frame as Canada trailed 21-19.
In the second quarter, Puerto Rico strengthened their defence which limited Canada’s ability to get into the post and score. Ward continued to attack aggressively on the offensive end and entered the half with a team high 10 points. Canada trailed 42-28 as the second quarter came to a close.
Hobin began the third quarter with a deep three-pointer, Phillip then added a basket of his own. Canada continued to keep up their defensive pressure, but an experienced Puerto Rican team distributed the ball effectively and were able capitalize on their scoring opportunities. Owen Klassen (Kingston, ON) continued his strong inside play, battling for five points in the quarter.
In the final frame, Canada continued to attack with a balanced effort but the strength of the Puerto Rican team proved to be too much as they came away with victory.
Ward led Canada with 15 points and five rebounds, while Hobin and Klassen each contributed 7 points.
With the loss, Canada now moves on to Saturday’s classification round, where they will face Brazil for fifth place at 5:30 p.m. local time (6:30 p.m ET).