Salem Radio Network News Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Sports

Olympics – Basketball 3×3-Serbian men edge out Latvia to stay perfect

TOKYO (Reuters) -In a fluctuating match between two giants of 3×3 basketball, the Serbian men emerged victorious over Latvia on Monday in a likely preview of a medal match in the sport’s Olympic Games debut.

The top-seeded Serbians improved to 6-0 with their 22-16 victory. Latvia slid to 3-2 on the third day of the tournament at the Aomi Urban Sports Park in Tokyo.

“I think it’s possible that we will play against them in the final. They are a great team,” said Serbia’s Dejan Majstorovic, who had a team-leading 11 points.

“We are already in the semi final. We have tomorrow one more game. We want to win that game, so we are focused on that.”

Serbia and Latvia have dominated the fledgling sport on the international circuit over the past decade.

In the women’s division, China toppled Japan 15-12 on flawless free throws and aggressive rebounds from Wang Lili. But the Japanese powered back against Italy, with Stephanie Mawuli hitting a two-pointer to seal the 22-10 win.

The host nation’s men didn’t fair as well, losing to both Serbia and the Russian Olympic Committee as their hopes of advancing faded.

The United States leads the women’s division with a perfect 4-0 record after beating Russia on Sunday. The U.S. team will face Italy and China on Monday.

The Romanian women secured their first win when Sonia Ursu hit a two-pointer to cement a 22-14 victory over winless Mongolia while the Chinese men’s squad picked up their first win with an upset 21-20 victory over Belgium.

Making its Olympic debut, 3×3 is looking to boost its global profile as a faster-paced, more compact alternative to basketball.

DJs play hip-hop music throughout competition 3×3 games, in keeping with the sport’s urban roots.

The medal matches will take place on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Rocky Swift; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Ed Osmond)

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