U16 Men Qualify for 2016 FIBA U17 World Championship

U16 Men Qualify for 2016 FIBA U17 World Championship

Overcoming a loss to New Zealand in the pool games, Australia have defeated their Trans-Tasman rivals 91-86 to win the gold medal at the Under-16 Oceania Championship and advance to the 2016 FIBA Under-17 World Championship.

Trailing by three points early in the game, Australia were determined not to fall into a similar hole as they did in their first meeting and clawed their way into the lead by the first change.

They slowly extended the margin before grabbing a game-high 15-point lead on a three-pointer from Lachlan Dent (14 points, five assists, five steals) halfway through the third quarter.

New Zealand mounted a charge though, reducing the deficit to eight at the final change and then getting within three points with just over a minute remaining in the contest.

Patrick Bines (five points, three steals) settled the nerves of the Australians with another three-pointer before Samson Froling (eight points, eight rebounds, two blocks) and Matthew Johns (15 points, eight boars) iced the game from the free-throw line.

Shooting 45% from the field, Australia hit 11-28 from beyond the arc and were led by 20 points on 6-9 shooting from Dragan Elkaz. They recorded just one more steal than the Kiwi's but scored 19-9 off turnovers.

The men's team will now advance to the Under-17 World Championship in Spain and have won silver medals at the past two tournaments.