Kicking off the action, Paraguay got off to a hot start against Panama leading 19-13 after the first quarter with Edgar Riveros tipping in six points while Fernando Dose added five himself. Panama shared more of their offensive load as Ernesto Oglive, who has scored 15+ points in his two games with Panama in the World Cup Qualifiers 2023, was kept to just four points in the first quarter leading all scorers.
Ogilvie had already scored 12 points by the half on 71 percent shooting, while Trevor Gaskins, Eugenio Luzcando and Eric Romero James all tipped in six points by the half to help get Panama out in front. Jorge Rojas added eight points by halftime for Paraguay, but as Panama’s defense held Dose and Riveros to just two points each, the rest of the bench could not keep up to help Paraguay hold their lead going into the half.
By the third quarter Ogilvie had already notched another 15-point game, but it was Panama’s ball movement that kept them offensively sound as Luzcando led the charge with six assists by the quarter’s end on top of four rebounds and three steals, being a utility player for Panama on both sides of the ball to extend their lead to nine with one quarter to play. While Paraguay struggled to find a shooting rhythm on offense, Vincenzo Orchipinti controlled the boards with six rebounds – all defensive – to keep Paraguay in the game after failing to find the rim.
Though Paraguay managed to keep it close through three quarters, Panama’s fourth quarter sealed their first Group A win as they outscored their opponent 26-13 in the final quarter with four players scoring 13 or more points as Ogilvie, Luzcando, Romero James and Trevor Gaskins all contributed in the win.
Fourteen minutes. That’s exactly how long the Uruguayan defense was able to keep the home team’s offense at bay, with Brazil (3-0 atop Group B) going off the rest of the way en route to an 85-66 victory Friday evening at the Ginásio Pedroçao in Franca.
That also coincided with Luciano Parodi’s scorching hot start, as the Uruguayan point guard scored 10 of his 12 points in the opening stanza and the visiting team managed a 14-14 tie at the end of the first quarter. But from that point forward, it was complete domination from Gustavo Conti’s squad. Their size advantage was quickly turned into a big rebounding edge, with Brazil finishing the game with a 43-27 lead on the boards – highlighted by a whopping 12 offensive rebounds.
Brazil offense was a picture of balance, with four different players scoring in double digits. Vitor Benite and Leonardo Meindl led the way with 13 apiece, while Yago Santos and Lucas Dias added 11 each. Santos also dished out seven assists, while both Bruno Caboclo and Augusto Lima pulled down seven rebounds.
That wealth and breadth of contributions allowed Brazil to steadily increase its lead, which grew to a dozen points at the end of the third quarter and to as much as 20 late in the fourth. The home defense took care of the rest, holding Rubén Magnano’s outfit (now 2-1) to 41.1 percent from the field and only 11 assists on 23 made baskets. Parodi ended up being Uruguay’s lone double-digit scorer in a game where they also shot a paltry 11 of 17 at the free throw line.
Despite Nestor García now coaching on the opposite bench, Venezuela (3-0 in Group A) went to Buenos Aires and proved they’re the real deal, completing a near-flawless performance to upset Argentina, 71-58, Friday night at Obras Sanitarias.
Coached by Fernando Duró, the vinotinto squad jumped to an early lead midway through the first quarter and never looked back despite the home team’s multiple attempts to get back in the game. Their ball movement, athleticism and interior scoring proved to be enough against a squad boasting multiple former NBA players – to the delight of the road crowd, a small but raucous congregation.
With Garly Sojo’s outside shooting (11 points on 3/5 from downtown) providing proper spacing, Nestor Colmenares shredded the Argentinean defense to the tune of 17 points and eight rebounds. Michael Carrera fell just shy of a double-double with 11 points and nine boards, while Pedro Chourio and David Cubillán provided timely buckets to protect the lead.
Argentina (2-1 after suffering its first loss) was never out of the game but also could never seem to get close enough, with their frozen cold shooting from the free throw line (15 of 30) becoming the main culprit. Venezuela committed 30 team fouls, but García’s team failed to capitalize on a night where they also couldn’t conjure their magic from beyond the arc (5/23 on three-pointers). Nicolás Brussino led the way with 16 points but star guards Carlos Delfino and Luca Vildoza (who shot a combined 6 of 18 from the field) didn’t have inspired performances and veteran big man Marcos Delía (9 points and six rebounds) couldn’t quite establish himself in the paint.
With both teams also in a position to find their first win in group play in solid competition, Chile’s fast paced offense to start the first quarter turned out to be the gamechanger for the game as Colombia could not close the gap as they fell to Chile 90-76 and fell to 0-3 in Group B play while Chile gained their first win.
Ignacio Arroyo and Sebastian Herrera led Chile’s offensive charge while Colombia could not find an offensive rhythm in the first quarter with only two players scoring four points leading the team. By halftime, Colombia scored only 12 points in the second quarter while Arroyo had already notched 11 points by the half for Chile.
Romario Roque scored 11 points for Colombia in the third quarter but Chile had three scorers in double digits by the end of the third leading by 10 points going into the final 10 minutes with Arroyo, Herrera and Franco Morales all tipping in 10 or more. Tonny Trocha and Soren de Luque controlled the boards for Colombia but unable to stop the strength of Chile’s offense was too much to handle.
In the end, Chile had the edge in their scoring power despite being out-rebounded by Colombia and unable to find an answer for Roque, but having five scorers with over 10 point was the closer for as Marcelo Perez added another 10 points. De Luque, Trocha and Pablo Gardner all scored over 10 points each for Colombia but no other playr scored more than six points.