It was podium finishes for both the men and women at the Papendal Tournament in Arnhem, Netherlands, though the teams are leaving silver medals, instead of the sought-after golds.
In the words of the Sr. Women’s National Team assistant coach Marni Abbott-Peter:
“Two very tough but interesting games today.
The men lost to Germany 70-55, but the score doesn’t really reflect the tone of the game. It was a back-and-forth game the whole way. Very rough and aggressive basketball with both teams pressing, and they traded baskets throughout the game with each team taking the lead at various points. The Germans took a slight lead near the end of the fourth quarter, and the Canadians were forced to foul down the stretch. The German team hit their foul shots, which stretched out the score at the end. Both coaches were playing a bit of a cat-and-mouse game throughout, with some interesting subs and lineups that we will probably not see during Paralympic play. The Canadian men will play the German Team again in their fourth game of pool play in London.
The men are packing their bags tonight and heading off tomorrow to Sheffield, about three hours north of London. They will train there for a few days and meet us in the athletes village later this week.
The ladies played very well against the Netherlands today, a completely different game then yesterdays 75-54 loss. We fine-tuned an excellent defense that we used to stop their number one and two threats, and it worked brilliantly. We chose to use it sparingly today, and it will be something to have in our pockets for our next game against the Dutch when we meet again in London. It was also a back-and-forth game, with neither team getting more than a six-point lead at any time throughout the game. We made a few mistakes down the stretch, with a couple of unfortunate turnovers, and had to start fouling in order to give ourselves a chance to win the game. The Netherlands, after shooting horribly from the line throughout most of the game, hit some clutch foul shots, and ended up winning 54-45. We were very happy with the performance of our ladies today, and are giving them a much needed day off tomorrow. We will train here in Papendal for a few more days, as the Mexican ladies are also here, so we will have some friendly scrimmages against them. We will pack up on Wednesday, and head off to London to the Paralympic athletes village.”