USA Edges Serbia At FIBA World Championship
LIEPAJA, LATVIA -- Joe Jackson (Memphis) scored a team-high 19
points and Tim Hardaway, Jr., (Michigan) nailed the game-winner
with 47 seconds remaining to lift the USA to an 80-78 victory over
Serbia at the FIBA U19 World Championship in Latvia on Friday (July
1). The victory assured the USA of earning the No. 1 seed for
Hardaway, Jr., who finished with 11 points, broke a 78-78 tie with a short driving jumper. Serbia, on its final possession with under 20 seconds remaining, worked the ball to leading scorer Aleksandar Cvetkovic, who attempted a three-point field goal for the win. The well-defended shot was off the mark, and Jeremy Lamb (Connecticut) grabbed the rebound with 3.9 seconds left for the win.
“This was a great test for our guys,” head coach Paul Hewitt said in a USA Basketball release. “We’re just trying to get better in each and every game. I think this is the type of game we can benefit from moving forward. We’re obviously happy with the win and feel fortunate that we got the win, but I think the benefits from this game may be shown later in the tournament.”
Jackson hit six of 12 shots from the field and all seven of his free throw attempts to pace the four USA players in double-figures. Patric Young (Florida) finished with 13 points, while Hardaway, Jr., and Tony Mitchell (North Texas) each had 11. Butler’s Khyle Marshall played just four minutes in the contest and did not score.
Cvetkovic led all scorers with 20 points.
The USA squad will close out preliminary round play against China on Saturday at 11:15 a.m. (ET). China dropped a 100-96 decision in double-overtime to Egypt in its second preliminary round game.
U.S. Preliminary Round Schedule at the FIBA U19 World Championship for Men
Thursday, June 30 - USA 115, Egypt, 60
Friday, July 1 - USA 80, Serbia 78
Saturday, July 2 - vs. China, 11:15 a.m. (ET)