The result was not unexpected. But the D’Tigress really performed well as US, the world number one and defending champions had their 20th straight win in the history of the FIBA Women World Cup.
They are now at 9,999 points in the history of the competition. They had their star performers too. Breanna Stewart finished with 19 points, A’Ja Wilson had 11 in 13 minutes, and Tina Charles got the honourable mention for her 8 points and 15 rebounds.
Nigeria’s D’Tigress scored just 17 points after the break, had no players in double digits, but will have something to be proud of – they held USA to 9 points in the first quarter.
It was the first time ever that happened to USA in World Cup and Olympics history.
It was also the first time USA scored less than 10 points in any quarter since 2006 and their last defeat, against Russia in the Semis.
For the D’Tigress losing to USA does not undermine their performance. It was an amazing World Cup for the ladies in green and white, and the first half of this one showed how much they have grown in recent years.
They will take the two wins over European opposition with great pride, defeating Turkey in Group Phase and Greece in the Quarter-Final Qualifications. Ezinne Kalu was all over the floor against USA getting 8 points, 6 assists (game-high), 5 steals (game-high), 4 rebounds.