Caleb Houstan poured in 11 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter to lead Canada past Spain 81-77, and into the semifinals of the FIBA U19 men’s basketball World Cup on Friday.
Zach Edey added 24 points and 15 rebounds for the Canadians in their first victory over Spain at this level.
After a tight first three quarters that saw neither team lead by more than two points, Canada outscored Spain 23-18 in the fourth.
“Every team in this tournament is tough, you can’t look past any team,” said Edey. “We need to remember that. We just need to lock in every game.”
Houstan, who’ll head to the University of Michigan next fall, also had six rebounds and five steals. Edey, a seven-foot-four centre for Purdue, had four blocks on the day, plus was dominant on the glass, hauling down eight offensive rebounds to help Canada outscore Spain 29-9 on second-chance points.
“Going to Zach early in the second half really spaced it out for the guards and wings,” Houstan said. “He was killing it all game. That kind of opened it up and then our whole offence was flowing more.”
Nana Owusu-Anane chipped in with 10 points for Canada.
An incredible first quarter-final here at the <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/FIBAU19?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#FIBAU19</a> Basketball World Cup 🏀 <a href=”https://twitter.com/CanBball?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@CanBball</a> 🇨🇦 beat Spain 🇪🇸 81-77 to advance to the semis 👏 <a href=”https://twitter.com/zach_edey?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@zach_edey</a> leading the way with 24 points + 15 reb 💪 <a href=”https://t.co/s61w34eo1F”>pic.twitter.com/s61w34eo1F</a>
The Canadians face either the U.S. or Senegal in Saturday’s semifinals. The U.S. would make for a rematch of the 2017 World Cup, where Canada upset the Americans in the semis en route to winning the tournament in Cairo, Canada’s first global victory at any age group.
Millan Jimenez had 17 points and nine rebounds to top Spain.
The gold medal game is Sunday.
The Canadians, coached by Paul Weir, are undefeated in the tournament.