Diamond Johnson lead team USA in scoring with 15 points and thus lead the team to the Gold Medal of the Fiba 2021 U19 World Cup. Team USA beat Australia by a score of 70-52. Diamond started with a strong first quarter scoring 8 points shooting 3-3 from the floor; 2-2 from the arc. That first quarter scoring burst included an at the buzzer three pointer. Diamond went 6-10 from the floor; 3-7 from the arc for the gold medal game. Johnson played better and better as the tournament progressed culminating in leading the team in scoring for the gold medal game.
Due to somewhat dismal shooting by the USA (36%), Australia stayed in the game somewhat. The USA led 18-14 after the first quarter; however, Australia led 26-24 with 5:44 left in the first half. After leading by 36-28 at the end of the first half, the USA extended the lead to 55-38 at the end of the third quarter. Australia did pull within 13 (57-44) with just over 8 minutes left in the game, but could get no closer.
Lauren Betts lead the USA in rebounding for the game with 14 while Catlin Clark led the team with 8 assists.
Players other than Caitlin Clark, Lauren Betts and Diamond Johnson who impressed were Te-Hina PaoPao (University of Oregon) and Sonia Citron (Notre Dame). Interested to watch Citron play in the ACC this coming season. The analyst at the half, thought Citron was in the running for USA MVP-not a bad assessment; however, Catlin Clark was awarded that-fair enough.
Correcting what I wrote yesterday, the N. C. State women's basketball team has three players getting gold in international competition this past off-season: Elissa Cunane (Americup), Jakia Brown-Turner (Americup) and Diamond Johnson (U19 World Cup).