Argentina edges Brazil to lift FIBA AmeriCup trophy

RIO DE JANEIRO, Sept. 12 (Xinhua) — Argentina edged out hosts Brazil 75-73 in the 2022 FIBA AmeriCup final in Recife on Sunday, winning six straight games to lift the trophy.

Argentina quickly took control of the game as they poured in six 3-pointers in the first quarter to wrap it up with a 12-point lead. The undefeated team extended their lead to as many as 15 points in the second quarter, while Brazil had no intentions to compromise as they outscored Argentina 24-22 during this stretch behind Vitor Benite’s seven points and Marcelinho Huertas’ six.

Brazil had a 12-5 run back from the locker room to cut the deficit to three points, but Argentina made eight free throws afterwards to enter the last 10 minutes with a 67-60 lead. The last quarter saw two teams trade leads until Argentine small forward Gabriel Deck made a layup with 16.1 seconds left to seal his side’s win.

Deck clinched a game-high 20 points and grabbed seven rebounds, while Nicolas Laprovittola added 15. On the Brazilian side, Benite scored 18 and veteran Huertas had 11.

Deck, Argentina’s leading scorer, was named the MVP of the tournament with an average of 21.2 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists.

Deck, his teammate Facundo Campazzo, Brazil’s Yago Santos, Canada’s Dalano Banton and Norris Cole of the United States were selected the All-Star Five of the tournament.

“Extremely proud of our guys. I think they did an amazing job, but before that, I want to congratulate Brazil, and its players and coaches. They had an amazing tournament as well. I think luck sometimes decides,” said Argentina’s head coach Pablo Prigioni.

Argentina has won 14 medals at the AmeriCup, the most ever, followed by Brazil at 11.

Earlier on Sunday, the United States made a last-quarter comeback to beat Canada 84-80 to bag home the bronze.