Canadian comeback squashes Great Britain

Canadian comeback squashes Great Britain

Canada’s men’s wheelchair basketball team descended upon Sydney Olympic Park Sports Centre today with the intent of making up for their 29 point loss to the AUstralians yesterday. They did just that with an impressive 63-50 victory over Great Britain at the Rollers World Challenge.

The game matched Great Britain, Beijing Paralympic bronze medallists, against silver medallist Canada.  Great Britain led the game throughout the first three quarters before Canada staged a fourth quarter comeback.

Jon Pollock paced the way for the British with 26 points on 53% shooting, but was held to only four points in the decisive fourth quarter.  Adam Lancia led the Canadians with 22 (including 14 points in second half), as well as 10 rebounds.

“Adam is one of our upper classification players, so we expect that out of him,” Canadian coach Jerry Tonello commented.

Canada tried to establish themselves in the post early, but the Brits caught on quick, cutting off passing lanes down low, forcing the Canadians into bad shots. The Canadians switched their focus to a more perimeter oriented offense with greater success, led by their star Adam Lancia.

Canada entered the final period trailing by five points before showing just why they’ve made the gold medal game in three straight Paralympics. Yvon Rouillard’s 12 fourth quarter points sparked a Canadian scoring run that took the lead for good. 

Tonello credited Rouillard for the turnaround, saying, “We finally had one of our players find his shooting touch, Yvon, to help us out of some tight situations. With Adam and Yvon both having good games, there was a great scoring balance coming from both those positions to make it really tough on GB’s defense to play us.”

The Canadians also played outstanding defence, holding the British to just 35% shooting from the floor.  Their full court press seemed to confuse Britain at times, forcing them into bad passes and 11 turnovers.

Great Britain’s next game is against the host Australian Rollers tomorrow night at 6:00pm, while Canada will look ahead to playing Japan tomorrow at 8:00pm.

You can follow the Rollers World Challenge live at the venue – Buy Tickets, on ABC2, LIVESTATS or on the official Rollers World Challenge Website.

[Box Score]

Quarter by Quarter:

1: GBR 16 CAN 8
H: GBR 30 CAN 22 (14-14)
3: GBR 41 CAN 36 (11-14)
F: CAN 63 GBR 50 (27-9)

CANADA 63 (Adam Lancia 22, Yvon Rouillard 20, Robert Hedges 14) bt
GREAT BRITAIN 50 (Jon Pollock 26, Ian Sagar 14, Joe Bestwick 3)