India pummelled a hapless Guam 107-42 on the second day of the FIBA U-18 Women’s Asian Championship at the Sree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru on Monday.
Guam stood no chance. Instead of 12 players, its roster had just eight and one among them, Maria Taitano, was walking around on crutches because of a knee injury. Their short stature -- an average height of 5 foot 5 inches -- meant they played catch up throughout. It won all of two second chance points in the entire match. India bagged 23.
Consequently, India's 28-9 lead by the end of the first quarter was no surprise. Guam’s point-guard Alana Salas did manage two fine three-pointers which was met with loud cheers from the sparse crowd. But they didn't hurt India one bit.
The second quarter similarly saw little resistance from Guam. Forward Srishti Suren often drove to the paint with ease and India stretched the lead to 50-22. After half-time, it was the turn of Sreekala Rani and Dharshini Thirunavukkarasu to make merry as India went on a 20-point scoring run which effectively flattened Guam.
Every Indian player scored. Six among them accounted for double-digit points, with Srishti (19 points and nine rebounds) and Dharshini (15 points and nine rebounds) the stand-out performers.
“We had no expectations,” said Guam coach Jimmy Yi. “We just came to have fun and results don’t matter. We did have a squad of 12 but four couldn’t make it here as they had to attend school. We are here just for the experience.”
Earlier, in Division A, while Australia, Korea and Japan walloped past their opponents, New Zealand, for the second day running, ran its adversary close. It kept pace with four-time defending champion China for nearly three quarters before falling away in the fourth and losing 58-67.
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