The Australian Devils have claimed their third consecutive silver medal at the IWBF Under-25 World Championships after dropping their gold medal clash against the USA, 25-62.
Their performance equals their best results from 2011 and 2015 and they finished this year’s tournament by only losing to the USA- in the group stage and gold medal game.
After such an impressive defensive effort against Great Britain in the Semi-Final, Australia were unable to contain USA whose speed in transition and pure shooting gave them an early buffer.
Their defensive wall set-up also caused problems for the Devils as they struggled to get the ball over half-court and they found themselves trailing 2-18 at the first break.
The second term followed a similar pattern but Australia continued to fight hard and they finally got some reward for effort out of the main break as Annabelle Lindsay (13 points, 14 rebounds, three assists) scored six in a row to collect a double-double for the Devils.
Teisha Shadwell (two points, two rebounds) and Maryanne Latu (four points, eight boards, two assists) began to make an impact as well through their passing and work on the glass while Jess Cronje (four points, eight rebounds, two assists) also had some impactful minutes off the bench.
They helped Australia minimise the damage with a 21-26 second half, curbing their turnovers and finishing with five second chance points to out-score the USA in that area.
“At the end of the day it was not the result we were looking but I’m so proud of how the girls played all week,” said Devils head coach Stephen Charlton.
With an average age of just 18, the Devils could field a very similar team in 2023 for the next Under-25 World Championships as they seek an elusive gold medal.
“We could have a number of players return in four years time,” said Charlton.
“Georgia Bishop-Cash has the chance to play in her third Under-25 tournament and someone like Teisha is a great young kid who has the right temperament to go as far as she wants to go.”
Find the box score here and watch the replay below.
The Australian Devils schedule for the 2019 IWBF U25 World Championships (all times AEST):
May 23: Devils def. Germany 55-37
May 24: Devils def. Turkey 53-24
May 25: Devils def. by USA 31-56
May 26: Quarter-Final- Devils def. South Africa 72-12
May 27: Semi-Final- Devils def. Great Britain 42-36
May 28: Gold medal game- Devils def. by USA 25-62