Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Barea and Puerto Rico fall

ATHENS -- Croatia overcame an early 17-point deficit and pulled away for a 95-81 triumph over Puerto Rico on Wednesday to claim first place in Group D of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

Davor Kus and Marko Tomas each poured in 15 points to lead a balanced scoring attack for the Croatians, who now face Canada in a quarter-final on Friday.

The defeat means that Puerto Rico must take on Slovenia.“We’ve just got to learn how to protect a lead,” Puerto Rico guard Carlos Arroyo said. “We know teams are going to make their runs, but we need to stay true to what we do.”

J.J. Barea scored seven in 17 minutes for Puerto Rico.

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