Dominican Republic overpowers Mexico in start of AmeriCup Qualifier

With the home crowd behind the Dominican senior basketball team playing at the Palacio de los Deportes in Santo Domingo, the DR won the AmeriCup Qualifier game. FIBA reported that it was a rollercoaster of a game, with 18 lead changes until at the end the DR pulled ahead to win 84-70.

The DR team now travels to Ciudad Mexico for the rematch against Mexico. The teams are part of Group C of the 2025 FIBA AmeriCup Qualifiers. The DR plays Canada, Mexico and Nicaragua in this group.

FIBA reports that Mexico led during most of the first half and benefitted from a mountain of missed free throws by the Dominican squad.

For the Dominican Republic, the turning point was in the third quarter, when the team began to erase an accumulated 9-point deficit. The home country tied the game at 56 at the end of the third quarter, erasing what had been a 9-point deficit accumulated in the second quarter.

In the end, Dominican coach David Díaz’s squad won the fourth quarter by a score of 28-14 as big men Luis Santos and Eloy Vargas, who had not delivered until that point, scored a pair of buckets each to swing the momentum of the game.

The FIBA release says that Jean Montero was the player of the game, with a sensational second half, scoring 16 of his team-leading 19 points after intermission. The combo guard shot 5/11 from the field, including 3/7 from beyond the arc and 6/8 the free-throw line. He added 7 assists and a pair of steals. His personal 6-0 run in 38 seconds with 2:42 clinched the victory for the locals.

FIBA also had praise for Angel Delgado (11 points and 9 rebounds), Andrés Feliz (13 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists), Víctor Liz (11 points on 2/3 from downtown) and Vargas (9 points and 11 boards).

Meanwhile, Girón was a one-man show for Mexico, finishing with a game-high 25 points. Mexico is expected to bolster its team to defeat the Dominicans in game 2 of the start of the AmeriCup Qualifier rounds.

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26 February 2024