Thomas, Team USA surge past Serbia in FIBA WWC quartefinal

Alyssa Thomas had 13 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists as Team USA overcame a slow start to beat Serbia 88-55. Kelsey Plum scored 17 points and A’ja Wilson added 15 to lead the Americans (6-0), who will face Canada in the semifinal of the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup.

It was back-and-forth for the first 17 minutes, with the U.S. failing to go on any major run. Kahlean Copper went out with an injury and Kelsey Plum replaced her to push Team USA to a 12-0 spurt to close the half as the U.S. led 50-33 at the break.

The U.S. extended its run to 20 straight points in the third quarter before Serbia finally ended a nearly 8 1/2 minutes drought with a 3-pointer by Yvonne Anderson. Anderson was the leading scorer for Serbia WNT with 14 points.

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The victory was the 28th in a row in World Cup play for the Americans, who haven’t lost since the 2006 semifinals against Russia. Soviet Union holds the record for the most consecutive wins in the competition with 56 between 1959 and 1986.

The U.S. reached at least the semifinals for the 12th consecutive tournament. After going 4-1 in first-round play, Canada hammered Puerto Rico 79-60 in quarterfinal action on Thursday and they will be Team USA’s opponent in the semifinal Friday.

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