Canadian Women To Face the Netherlands in Quarter-Finals at Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

Cindy Ouellet

(Rio de Janeiro) The Canadian women’s Paralympic wheelchair basketball team will collide with the Netherlands in the quarter-finals at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games on the heels of an 82-49 win against host nation Brazil at the Rio Olympic Arena on Monday.

Canada and the Netherlands will square off on Tuesday at 11:45 a.m. BRT at the Rio Olympic Arena. The teams last met at a major international event in a thrilling semifinal at the women’s world championship in 2014, with Canada emerging victorious by a single point.

“We are really excited and ready to go. We’re done the round robin games now and so we are really pumped to get the playoffs started,” said Team Canada player Arinn Young, of Legal, Alta. “We are pretty confident going into the quarter-finals. It’s going to be a mental and physical game. That’s what we are preparing for now. We will be ready to go.”

“It’s usually a high scoring game when we play the Dutch, and it’s usually a pretty physical game,” said Team Canada Head Coach Bill Johnson. “They are a pretty strong group, as are we, and it leads to a pretty physical game. It’s fun and clean, and it’s going to be a great example of wheelchair basketball. I look forward to it.”

Erica GavelThe win against Brazil placed Canada in a three-way tie for first place in Group A with Germany and Great Britain, all with a record of 3-1 after preliminary round play, with Canada falling to the third spot in the pool courtesy of a point differential tie-breaker between the three teams.

Canada started its final round robin match determined to push the pace against Brazil and take the energetic home crowd out of the game. Canada carved out an early lead by doubling up on Brazil, 24-12, after the opening quarter. The Canadians turned up the tempo in the second frame, nearly scoring at will from the paint as Brazil struggled to keep Canada outside of the key. ada entered halftime with a 49-22 advantage. With the game firmly in their grasp, the Canadians used their full depth of their bench down the stretch to cruise to the win.

Young had a game-best 22 points for Canada. Teammate Cindy Ouellet (Quebec City, Que.) picked up a double-double with 20 points and 12 assists. Janet McLachlan (Vancouver, B.C.) also had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Vileide Almeida scored 12 points to lead Brazil.

Team Canada Men To Play for 11th Place

The Canadian men’s Paralympic wheelchair basketball team completed pool play on Monday night with a 67-46 loss to Turkey at the Rio Olympic Arena. Canada (0-5) will play Algeria (0-5) to decide 11th place at 9:30 a.m. BRT on Wednesday.

“We all had high hopes to accomplish a little bit more here,” said Team Canada co-captain Bo Hedges, of Wonowon, B.C. “We still have one more game and we have to continue to improve like we have throughout this tournament. It’s a great group of young guys and a great opportunity to play Algeria and to keep going and keep building.

“I’ve been through a lot of tough, devastating losses and challenging times with basketball and so you know you have to learn from it and build from it. It just makes us stronger going forward toward the next world championship and Tokyo in 2020.”

Canada stayed with Turkey through the opening half, trailing by five points at halftime, 29-24. Turkey broke the game open in the second half, utilizing its size advantage over Canada to convert on scoring opportunities in the paint and on the fast break. The Turkish side widened to gap to a 14-point lead, 51-37, after three quarters of play and put the game out of reach in the final frame.

Canada’s David Eng (Montreal, Que.) led his team with 15 points, while Nik Goncin (Regina, Sask.) added eight points. Ozgur Gurbulak had a double-double for Turkey with 18 points and 10 assists.

About Wheelchair Basketball Canada

Wheelchair Basketball Canada is the national sport governing body responsible for the organization of the sport in Canada. It is a non-profit, charitable organization that is committed to excellence in the development, support and promotion of wheelchair basketball programs and services for all Canadians from grassroots to high performance. Wheelchair basketball is a fast-paced, hard-hitting, competitive sport in which Canada is held in high esteem around the world for winning a combined six gold, one silver, and one bronze medal in the last six Paralympic Games.

About the Canadian Paralympic Committee

The Canadian Paralympic Committee is a non-profit, private organization with 25 member sports organizations dedicated to strengthening the Paralympic Movement. The Canadian Paralympic Committee’s vision is to be the world’s leading Paralympic nation. Its mission is to lead the development of a sustainable Paralympic sport system in Canada to enable athletes to reach the podium at the Paralympic Games. By supporting Canadian high performance athletes with a disability and promoting their success, the Canadian Paralympic Committee inspires all Canadians with a disability to get involved in sport through programs delivered by its member organizations. For more information, visit www.paralympic.ca.

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