Canada routs Puerto Rico to remain undefeated at FIBA U19 World Cup

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DAUGAVPILS, Latvia — Canada booked its spot in the quarterfinals of the FIBA under-19 men's basketball World Cup with an 86-56 rout of Puerto Rico on Wednesday.

Caleb Houstan had a game-high 14 points plus four rebounds and three assists, while Ryan Nembhard had 13 points and 10 assists.

"(Houstan) is just a great player and his game has developed a lot and I think he's able to come over here and show a little bit more of his skill," said Nembhard, who played alongside Houstan at Montverde Academy in Florida.

Elijah Fisher had a couple of highlight-reel dunks en route to 14 points and three steals, while Bennedict Mathurin chipped in with 13 points and three rebounds.

Canada also got strong defensive performances from Zach Edey (10 points, eight rebounds) and Nana Owusu-Anane (seven points, eight boards) to remain unbeaten in the tournament.

"In the first couple of games we were getting killed on the boards, so that was the main focus and we worked on that in practice and made that emphasis and it's paid off in the last two games," Nembhard said.

Canada, which won the World Cup in 2017 in Cairo, will face Spain in the quarterfinals on Friday.

The Canadians previously beat Lithuania, Japan and Senegal to finish atop their group.

"I have been playing FIBA for five teams now and finally this is my year," said centre Charles Bediako. "I have never before gone 3-0 in pool play so it feels really good."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 7, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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