Canada dunks Venezuela 74-57 in final game of FIBA qualifier

CARACAS, Venezuela — Phil Scrubb and Kalif Young each scored 14 points as Canada's senior men's squad dunked Venezuela 74-57 to close out the FIBA World Cup Americas qualifier event on Sunday.

Jackson Rowe and Trae Bell-Haynes each scored 12 points for Canada, which led 22-17 after the first quarter and 37-30 at halftime. The team was coming off an 83-72 loss to Argentina on Thursday.

The already-qualified Canadian squad, coached by Nate Bjorkgren, outrebounded Venezuela 51-37 and enjoyed the largest scoring run of the game (13-0).

“It was a really big win for us,” said Bjorkgren. “An important win in the way we came in here to finish out the road trip.

“I thought our guys did such a great job of responding from our previous game (against Argentina)."

Nestor Colmenares led Venezuela with 13 points, while Michael Carrera had 10.

“I thought the bigs for Venezuela were doing some nice things,” Bjorkgren said. "This Venezuela team really comes out and plays well."

Canada shot 42 per cent from the floor in the win, while holding Venezuela to 28 per cent shooting. The Canadians also held a 9-4 edge in made three-pointers, while their reserves outscored Venezuela’s bench 36-25.

With the win, Canada topped the six-country Group E with 11 wins and one loss. The Dominican Republic was next at 9-3.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 26, 2023.

The Canadian Press