Team Canada has qualified for the knockout round in women’s basketball at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Kim Smith of Surrey, British Columbia and Courtnay Pilypaitis of Orleans, Ontario scored 14 points each today as Canada defeated Brazil 79-73 in Group B action at the Basketball Arena in London.
With the win, the Canadians improved to 2-2 and eliminated the winless Brazilians who failed to qualify for the quarterfinals despite being ranked sixth in the world.
According to CTV, it was Canada’s first win in a decade against Brazil in women’s basketball.
Head Coach Allison McNeill was very pleased with her team’s performance.
“We had to attack the pressure. Once we did that we were okay. We were strong coming down the stretch.”
Team Canada built a 14 point lead by halftime, only to see the Brazilians battle back in the second half and outscore Canada 28-16 in the third quarter. In the fourth, the Canadians took control and hung on to their lead.
A major reason for the Canadian success was that they were able to perform well from long range. The team scored six three pointers.
Canada now plays Australia at 7:30 a.m. MT on Sunday. With a win and a Russia win over France, the Canadians would avoid the United States in the quarterfinals. There is also a possibility if Canada could advance with a 3-2 record, as for and against would then come into play.