No problems for the Belgian Cats against Korea. With swinging basketball, they achieved a marked victory in the second group match at the World Cup in Sydney, Australia. The selection of national coach Valéry Demory is immediately “back on track” for a place in the quarterfinals at the World Cup. “Confirming tomorrow against Puerto Rico is the message now,” said Antonia Delaere.
The Belgian Cats briefly fell behind (5-8) against Korea, but quickly took over the game in the study round. A secure Julie Vanloo dropped bombs, provided the acceleration and propelled the Cats to a 15-8 bonus after 9-8. The Belgian Cats took care of their defense and unpacked with several fast-breaks. Hind-Ben Abdelkader was sharp, Julie Allemand conducted and Emma Meesseman scored, picked up rebounds and provided assists. The score therefore evolved from 19-10 to a 26-12 Belgian lead after the first quarter. Korea scored with collective three-pointers, but the Belgian girls continued to pick up speed, dominated the rebound and walked further away to a 38-20 score. Julie Vanloo continued to score and with the support of Julie Allemand and Hind Ben Abdelkader, the Cats had a “twenties” in their pocket at 45-24. National coach Valéry Demory rotated with many players and saw his Belgian Cats close the first half with a 50-30 bonus.
In the third quarter, Hind Ben Abdelkader showed her class and scored three three-pointers. Korea, however, was tough and wouldn’t budge: 53-33 and 58-41. The Cats gasped for a moment, narrowly lost the third quarter (19-20) but still started the last slide with a 69-50 lead. The Cats had a difficult start on the closing slide (69-54) but eventually found the right rhythm again. Billie and Becky Massey scored and at 75-54 the twenty-something was a fact again.
National coach Valéry Demory brought all players on court and Korea was able to soften a bit in the final minute. The handsome Belgian victory was of course no longer in danger. Julie Allemand (13 points, 4 rebounds, 8 assists), Emma Meesseman (9 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists), top striker Hind Ben Abdelkader (17 points), Antonia Delaere (10 points) and Julie Vanloo (14 points, including 4 on 7 three-pointers) Belgium were the strong holders in a collective (10 players scored).
Quartz: 26-12, 24-18, 19-20, 15-11
Belgium: DELAERE 10, MEESSEMAN 9, LINSKENS 4, VANLOO 14, ALLEMAND 13, Ramette 2, Resimont 0, Ben Abdelkader 17, Becky Massey 6, Lisowa 4, Billie Massey 5, Joris 0