Although the mens team failed to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics, Canada’s womens basketball team took a step in the right direction with a third place finish at the FIBA Americas tournament.
The Canadians got a 59-46 win over Cuba in the third place game on Saturday, and impressed head coach Allison McNeill in the process. Her team lost a close semi-final 62-59 to Argentina on Friday, and McNeill told reporters afterwards that she was proud of how they bounced back.
“It was a tough loss [Friday] night in terms of the way it kind of went down and we really had to regroup today and they did and showed a ton of character,” she said. “Cuba’s a very explosive team and we just played great defence so I was very proud of them.
“You can’t look back and you can’t go back so I was really pleased that (Friday’s loss) didn’t grind our team down. They were resilient and got the bronze.”
By finishing in the top four, Canada has earned a place in next summer’s worldwide Olympic qualifying tournament with 11 other teams and a chance to take the next step and make it in to the Olympics, something the mens national team failed to do at the FIBA Americas last month.
Brazil won the tournament, and secured a spot at the Olympic games next July, with a dominating 74-33 win over Argentina.