FIBA Americas: Canada ends tournament on a high note
Cory Joseph hits buzzer-beater in bronze-medal game; Venezuela upsets Argentina
Cory Joseph hit the winning bucket with no time left on the clock as the Canadian men's national team took third place at the FIBA Americas basketball championship by beating host Mexico 87-86 on Saturday.
Canada looked to have the victory sealed, leading 79-70 with 3:21 to play, before Mexico started to claw back. The two nations traded baskets before Francisco Cruz put the Mexicans ahead 86-85 with eight second to play.
Kelly Olynyk inbounced the ball to Joseph at his baseline and he walked the ball up the floor before dropping a fade-away jump shot form the top left of the key for the win.
"To come back today and get the win, shows the character we have on this team," said Joseph, who went 4-for-9 from the field.
"We didn't reach our goal that we wanted to, but we took a step in the right direction as a group and we'll continue to build."
Andrew Nicholson led Canada with 20 points while Andrew Wiggins added 18. Joseph finished with 11 points and eight assists.
Olynyk, coming off a 34-point, 13-rebound performance in Friday's semifinal loss to Venezuela, picked up his second straight double double with 10 points and 11 boards.
Marco Ramos led Mexico with 19 points and Gustavo Ayon had 16 points and 19 rebounds.
"This is a tough game to play after both teams went through emotional games last night," said head coach Jay Triano. "Where we are in our program, it was a great experience to beat a team in their own country and get the win after what happened yesterday."
Venezuela takes gold
Heissler Guillent scored 15 points and Venezuela pulled off another upset, beating Argentina 71-67 to win the FIBA Americas championship for the first time.
Guillent scored 19 points in the semifinals against heavy favorite Canada on Friday night to give the Venezuelans their first Olympic berth since Barcelona in 1992.
John Cox added 12 points and Windi Graterol had 11 for Venezuela, the runner-up in the 1992 FIBA Americas championship with a generation that was known in their country as the "Portland heroes".
Venezuela won the title despite the absence of their best player, Greivis Vazquez, a point-guard for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Andres Nocioni scored 21 points and Luis Scola added 14 for Argentina.
With files from The Associated Press