Thorburn, Nurse help Team Canada post big win over Chile

Shona Thornburn (Photo: Canada Basketball)

Shona Thornburn (Photo: Basketball Canada)

Xalapa, Mexico – Hamilton’s Shona Thorburn showed-off her range in leading Canada’s Senior Women’s National Team to a 93-51 victory over Chile at the 2013 FIBA Americas Championship for Women. With the win, Canada improves to 2-0 in pool play, while the loss moves Chile to 0-3 with a single game remaining in the preliminary round.

Thorburn had 15 points – all collected from long-range through five three-pointers – to top Canada’s scoring parade. East Preston, N.S. product Justine Colley and Mission, B.C. native Kim Gaucher each tallied 11 points. Hamilton’s Kia Nurse and Krista Phillips also finished in double-digits with 10.

Canada’s balanced unselfish attack was on display throughout the contest as the team notched 27 assists on 34 made-baskets. Five players each finished with four assists as Canada continued to share the ball well.

Canada came out quickly to establish its style of play in the match. The fast-paced first saw Brampton, Ont. native Tamara Tatham power her side with seven points in the game’s opening 90 seconds. A strong team effort would propel the Canadians to a 26-10 lead to close the quarter. A 15-0 run through the middle portion of the second period would extend the Red and White’s lead to 30 points – an advantage that was maintained at halftime as Canada stayed ahead 49-19.

The Chilean squad began the second half with renewed energy and a deft shooting stroke. Strong work from long-range allowed the South American side to trim the deficit. Team Chile outscored Canada 22-17 in the third, but still trailed 66-41 after 30 minutes. The SWNT closed-out the match by showing its commitment to both ends of the court. The Canadian side netted 27 points while limiting Chile to 10. Team Canada’s strong defence forced 23 turnovers in the game and the team took advantage by netting 30 points off the giveaways.

Despite the lopsided victory, head coach Lisa Thomaidis of Dundas stressed the need to remain determined and focused. “The international game is very physical and tough, but we also need to challenge ourselves every day, regardless of the team that we are playing. We cannot lose sight of our objective. We will use tomorrow’s game as another opportunity to keep learning and growing.”