Nurse, Canada perfect in FIBA AmeriCup pool play
Updated 10:50 pm, Thursday, August 10, 2017
UConn guard Kia Nurse’s Canadian team is a win away from qualifying for its fourth consecutive FIBA World Cup.
Nurse had eight points, three assists and three steals as Canada defeated Paraguay 86-64 on Thursday to clinch the top spot in Group B at the FIBA AmeriCup Championship in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Former UCLA star Nirra Fields had 25 points, 10 rebounds and three steals, Katherine Plouffe had 12 points and Michelle Plouffe finished with nine points and 13 rebounds as Canada finished pool play with a 4-0 record.
Canada, the defending champion, will play Brazil in Saturday’s semifinals. The top three finishers earn spots in the 2018 FIBA World Cup.
Nurse has struggled with her shot in the tournament, but she will enter the medal round averaging 8.8 points per game.
Manchester’s Ashley Perez averaged 8 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists to help Puerto Rico to advance to the semifinals as the second-place team in Group B. Argentina will meet Puerto Rico in the semifinals.
The United States is not entered in the tournament since it already has a World Cup berth as the defending world champion.
NOTE: The first game of Nurse’s senior season at UConn will now be against Stanford and not Ohio State as originally planned according to a report by Carl Adamec of the Manchester Journal Inquirer via the SNY UConn blog. The game will be played on Nov. 12 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio which happens to be the site of the 2018 Final Four.