U.S. Wins World Cup Over Australia. Loyd Contributes
by dillon77 (2018-10-01 09:19:45)

The United States capped off the FIBA World Cup with a perfect 6-0 record when they defeated Australia in the final, 73-56. A day earlier they had beaten Belgium in the semifinals.

As former U.S. National Team player Kara Lawson pointed out (more than) a few times in her commentary yesterday, the U.S. is virtually a sure thing on this stage. Once Brittany Griner joined the rock-solid Breanna Stewart (tournament MVP) and Diana Taurasi in the starting line-up, this team looked "beyond beyond." When Maya Moore rejoins the pool of players available for the Olympics, one should feel very optimistic.

ND did have a player on the team and Jewell Loyd was the first guard off the bench (Elena Della Donne was the first forward). Ms. Loyd's contributions, particularly based on the Belgium and Australia games were solid. While she didn't go nuts in terms of scoring (8 and 9, respectively), Jewell stepped it up in other areas; from rebounding and assists to most notably, defense. She led the team in steals yesterday (3) and helped hound her Seattle Storm teammate Sami Whitcomb into a 6-turnover day and one for four shooting.

These kinds of contributions led Lawson to say she thought Loyd had earned U.S. Coach Dawn Staley's trust going forward. There are some two more years to see who else might step up or down, but I though Jewell took a solid step up the ladder. Not a huge one, but a positive, good one, both for herself and the team.

Once again, I have no idea why Skylar Diggins and/or Kayla McBride turned down the invitations to try out for this team, but Jewell did herself the proverbial solid in looking down the international tournament road.

Press release, box scores, etc. linked below.