Spinners defeat host nation for first win of U23 World Championship

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A second straight nail-biter for the Australian Spinners at the Under-23 World Championships has resulted in success with a four-point victory against host nation, Canada.

Following a tough loss to Iran in their opening game, the Spinners were determined to get on the winners list and after Canada took a momentary lead late in the first quarter, Australia put together a 14-point run across the opening two periods to gain some breathing room.

Jake Fulwood (eight points) was the catalyst with Anderson Parker (two points, two rebounds) and Bailey Rowland (six points, three boards) also chiming in but despite leading by double-digits, a strong finish to the half from Canada trimmed the Spinners’ margin to seven at the main break.

The hosts carried that momentum into the third term with Ben Moronchuk (28 points, nine rebounds) finding his range and Liam Hickey (16 points, nine rebounds, five assists, three steals) also starring.

Canada roared all the way back to grab the lead and early in the fourth quarter, a three-point play from Moronchuk put them ahead by five points.

The Canadians were very reliant on their starting five though with the Spinners continuing to rotate through their bench and some important minutes from Rowland and Brian Carminati (nine points, five boards) proved vital as they finished with a 25-0 edge from their second unit.

They both hit the scoreboard as well while the defence of Jeremy Tyndall was also evident, giving Australia the advantage inside the final five minutes before the teams began to trade baskets.

Tom O’Neill-Thorne was the man to finally break the mould, following a Carminati lay-up with a jump shot of his own to give Australia a three-point lead.

Dallaire was able to respond for Canada but on the following possession, O’Neill-Thorne found Fulwood who composed himself before knocking down a basket as he was fouled.

Canada then had a final possession to tie the game but O’Neill-Thorne (26 points, nine rebounds, 12 assists) stood in their way once again, coming up with a huge steal before Carminati sealed a 62-58 win from the free-throw line.

The box score can be found here while you will be able to watch the Spinners games via the IWBF’s website here.

With the top four teams from each pool advancing to the Quarter-Finals, Australia now find themselves firmly entrenched near the top of the ladder with a game against Brazil to come tonight AEST.


Pool A                                                   Pool B
Turkey 2-0 (+58)                                 Germany 2-0 (+89)
Canada 1-1 (+31)                                  Japan 2-0 (+27)
Australia 1-1 (0)                                   Great Britain 1-1 (+35)
Italy 1-1 (-4)                                          France 1-1 (+33)
Iran 1-1 (-14)                                        USA 0-2 (-61)
Brazil 0-2 (-67)                                   South Africa 0-2 (-123)

The Australian Under-23 Spinners World Championship Schedule (all times AEST):
June 11: Australia vs. Brazil at 12am
June 12: Australia vs. Italy at 8am
June 13: Australia vs. Turkey at 12pm
June 15: Quarter-Finals
June 16: Semi-Finals
June 17: Bronze and Gold Medals