USA Women Rally Back Against Russia for 79-68 Win
Chantelle Anderson leads US scorers with 15 points and six rebounds

2001 World University Games Schedule

August 27, 2001

BEIJING, China - After trailing by 12 points at halftime, the USA Basketball Women's World University Games Team (1-0, 3-1) rallied back to upset Russia (0-1, 3-1) by 11, 79-68, on Monday afternoon. Chantelle Anderson (Vanderbilt / Vancouver, Wash.) and Shereka Wright (Purdue / Copperas Cove, Texas) tallied 15 points and 6 rebounds apiece, while Standford's Cori Enghusen (Bothell, Wash.) added 13 points. The USA women return to action tomorrow against China (1-0, 4-0) at 11:00 a.m. at Betida Gym. Ashley McElhiney played for eight minutes in the contest and totaled one rebound.

"We started out really slow," said Enghusen. "But we knew we had to pick up it because it was a must-win game for us. At halftime we knew what we were doing that was making us play bad. Coach (Ryan) really motivated us at halftime, but I think we motivated ourselves too. We picked it up in the second half and did what we had to do."

"We really came together in the second half and played as a team," said Anderson. "That's one of the strengths of this team - using our depth and playing together. In the first half, we played like we were sleeping and everyone was trying to wake up the team by trying to do everything themselves. In the second half, we played as a team, moved the ball and used each other."

The Russians took off on a 7-0 run to start the game. At the 7:20 mark, the USA put their first points on the board with a basket by Anderson and closed out the first period trailing Russia 20-15. Russia extended their lead in the second quarter, going up by as many as 13 points with 2:30 to go in the first half. The USA missed all 13 shots from behind the arc in the first half, while Russia was 3-3.

The USA women came out of the locker room with a 10-0 run to chop Russia's lead to two, 41-43, behind seven points from Wright. Kara Lawson (Tennessee / Alexandria, Va.) sank a three to give the U.S. their! ! first lead of the game, 53-50, with 1:21 to go in the third period. In the fourth quarter, Enghusen recorded six points in a row, putting the USA team up 59-57 with 8:11 to play. Chrissy Floyd (Clemson / Laurens, S.C.) shot 3-3 from the field while Anderson added four more points to pull away from Russia for the 79-68 victory.

"I felt like we were playing a little bit tentative in the first half offensively," said USA and University of Virginia head coach Debbie Ryan. "We had to talk to the team at halftime about being more aggressive and playing with a little more character. It's good to see us play from behind. I had not seen this team play from behind. It's good that we showed a lot of character today and that we're able to push it and finish it at the end."

The USA faces China tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. The USA squad defeated host China 92-89 on Aug. 16 in the final game of the ! ! Dong Du Cup, a four-team round-robin tournament in Zhangjiagang, China. The Americans conclude quarterfinal play against Brazil on Aug. 29 at 7:00 p.m. The 2001 World University Games quarterfinals play continues through Aug. 29, with semifinals being conducted Aug. 30 and the medal games being held Aug. 31. All times are local Beijing, China time which is 12 hours ahead of EDT.

"We're excited to play China again," added Enghusen. "They got better since we played them, but we got better too."

Ryan is assisted by University of Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder and East Carolina University (N.C.) head coach Dee Stokes.

The World University Games, held every two years and organized by the International University Sports Federation (FISU), is a multi-sport competition open to men and women between the ages of 17 and 28 (born between Jan. 1, 1973 and Dec. 31, 1983) and who are, or have been within the past year, a student at! ! a college or university. The USA Women have enjoyed outstanding success in the World University Games and have earned 11 medals in 12 appearances, including four golds, six silvers and one bronze medal, and have compiled an overall record of 68-14 (82.9 winning percentage) since beginning World University Games play in 1973. In the last competition, which was held in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, the U.S. finished with a 4-2 record and the silver medal.

 
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