Canada reaches FIBA U-19 semifinals for 1st time
Phenom R.J. Barrett leads way in 73-67 defeat of France
Canada will play for its first ever medal at the FIBA U19 World Cup.
R.J. Barrett of Mississauga, Ont., scored 27 points to lead the Canadians to a 73-67 victory over France in Friday's quarter-finals.
Canada will face either Germany or the United States in the semifinals on Saturday. Those two countries were playing their quarter-final later Friday.
👀 <a href="https://twitter.com/RjBarrett6">@RjBarrett6</a> with the one-handed slam! Canada leads FRA 🇫🇷 37-27 with 7:59 to play in the 3rd quarter at <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FIBAU19?src=hash">#FIBAU19</a>. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WeAreTeamCanada?src=hash">#WeAreTeamCanada</a> <a href="https://t.co/EaCrq70xGs">pic.twitter.com/EaCrq70xGs</a>—@CanBball
"What an incredibly proud moment for this group and this team," head coach Roy Rana said. "To make history at the U19 level is sweet for us but we're not going to settle. We're focused on getting ready for the next challenge."
Abu Kigab of St. Catharines, Ont., had 17 points, 15 rebounds and six assists, while Grant Shephard of Kelowna, B.C., chipped in with 12 points for the Canadians, who were tied 15-15 after the first quarter, but pulled away to take a 35-25 lead into the halftime break.
Barrett, who turned 17 last month, added five rebounds and four assists.
"We played hard as a group, we knew what we had to do, and we got it done," Barrett said.
Canada is 5-1 on the tournament, their one loss coming against Spain.
Fairly muted celebration for Canada, who advance to play the winner of USA/Germany (next) in the semis. Still have work to do it appears. <a href="https://t.co/C8B1K6HY7D">pic.twitter.com/C8B1K6HY7D</a>—@DraftExpress