Canada's unbeaten streak at U19 World Cup snapped with semifinal loss to U.S.

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RIGA, Latvia — Caleb Houstan put up 23 points but Canada dropped a 92-86 decision to the U.S. in semifinal action at the FIBA U19 World Cup on Saturday.

It was Canada's first loss of the tournament and a rematch of the 2017 World Cup where Canada upset the Americans in the semis en route to a gold medal.

Despite the final result, Toronto's Zach Edey turned in another solid performance, adding 16 points and 16 rebounds.

The Canadians chased for much of the game but narrowed the deficit to three points with 7:40 left on the clock thanks to a three-pointer by Benedict Marthurin.

The U.S. was quick to respond, reeling off a 17-0 run to break open the game.

"They just made shots," Edey said. "We got lackadaisical. We gave up some open shots. Other than that run in the fourth quarter, we were the better team, but we just cannot let up for two or three minutes. That was the story of the game."

The Americans shot 46 per cent from field goal range, led by Kenneth Lofton Jr. with 16 points.

Canada will play either Serbia for bronze on Sunday.

"We felt (the Americans) were the only team that could challenge us really," Edey said. "We’re coming tomorrow with that mindset: just to dominate and make sure that we get our country’s second medal in this event."

Also on Sunday, the U.S. will meet France in the final.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 10, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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