Canada remain undefeated with resounding win over US Virgin Islands in FIBA Basketball World Cup Qualifier
Kyle Wiltjer scored 24 points as the Canadian men’s basketball team closed out their second FIBA World Cup qualifying window, beating the US Virgin Islands 94-46 on Sunday to remain undefeated.
Wiltjer had six three-pointers in the win as Canada overall shot lights deep, scoring 15 of 33.
And defensively, Canada has been solid, holding the US Virgin Islands to 26.7% shooting from the ground while turning them over 19 times.
The Canadian led the Virgin Islands by no less than 51 in the contest.
“It was a big challenge for our team,” said Canadian coach Nate Bjokrgren. “We played a real physical game and played last night against the Dominican Republic. For the guys to turn around and play again today here at 3:00 against another fiery team, our guys have done such a good job approaching these two Games .
“Their approach to the first game and then obviously the game today, the approach they had, the relentlessness they had in the way they attacked, it’s really fun to watch this group play. It’s fun to watch them play defense and share the basketball.”
WATCH | Canada crush US Virgin Islands in FIBA Basketball World Cup Qualifiers:
Canada beat the Dominican Republic on Saturday, 85-79, in the first of this two-game qualifying window.
Rakeem Christmas, who once had a cup of coffee in the NBA, led all Virgin Islands scorers with 15 points.
The FIBA Basketball World Cup will start on August 25, 2023, hosted by Indonesia, Japan and the Philippines.
Waiting for next window
Reaching the FIBA World Cup is an important first step towards reaching the Paris 2024 Games. A good part of Olympic qualification is directly linked to World Cup results.
Playing in the second of a six-window process, Canada are now 4-0 so far in their qualifying campaign and atop Group C in the Americas Qualifier as the only undefeated team in the group. .
“We are satisfied but we are looking to the future,” said Wiltjer. “We’ll take it one game at a time. I’ve been to the World Cup and it’s an amazing event. We want to get back there.
“Everyone is on deck trying to make it happen. And then at the end we also want to go to the Olympics. We have big goals as a program and now is the time to do it, so we we’re focused.”
Canada will then play in the third qualifying window on July 1-4, again against the Dominican Republic and the US Virgin Islands, at a location yet to be determined.
After the conclusion of the third window, the fourth place team in each of the four Americas Region pools will be eliminated and the qualification process will then enter the second round where the top three teams from each of the pools will then be divided into of them. new groups.
In the case of Canada, if they made it out of the first round, they would enter a new group with the other top two from Group C and the top three from Group A, which includes Argentina, Panama, Paraguay and Venezuela. .
Of these two new groups, the first three of each of them and the best fourth between the two groups will qualify for the FIBA Basketball World Cup.
In order to determine the best fourth place, the overall record, including the first lap, will be taken into account. In addition, in the case of identical records, the point difference is an important determining factor in the tiebreakers.
The Canadian men’s basketball team hasn’t reached the Olympics since 2000.