Buenos Aires, Argentina – The U.S. Men’s U23 team notched another tally in the win column to improve to 5-0 at the 2017 U23 America’s Wheelchair Basketball World Championships Qualifier. Team USA knocked off Chile for the second time at the tournament, 78-18. The United States will conclude the America’s Qualifier with its final game against host country Argentina.
Pacing Team USA on Friday was University of Texas at Arlington’s Fabian Romo of Missouri, Texas, as he scored 21 points, snagged 6 rebounds. University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Brent Regier of Henderson, Nebraska, socred the second most in the Chile game with 19 points and a team high 8 rebounds.
Drew Selz of Waterford, Wisconsin and the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater, put up 8 points, his tournament high to date.
The U23 men were very stingy on the defensive side of the ball. At half, Team USA was up 41-12, and only allowed Chile to the net for two points in the third.
"Today our U23 team showed its best team defensive effort of the tournament," said U.S. Men's U23 Head Coach Jeremy Lade of Whitewater, Wisconsin. "They movedwell together, had awareness of threats and communicated through all situations. We still have plenty to work o, but our game against Chile was a stepping stone in the right direction."
Team USA saw contributions from four other players throughout the game. After five days of play, Team USA has outscored the field 372-153, and will tip off against Argentina on Saturday.
The United States must place in top two to qualify for the 2017 IWBF Men’s U23 World Championships, scheduled for Toronto, Canada, June 8-16.
U.S. Paralympic medalist Jeremy Lade of Whitewater, Wisconsin, is serving as the head coach of the Men’s U23 World Championships team, and it is his first coaching assignment for the United States. Also on the sidelines are assistant coaches Christian Burkett of Seattle, Washington, and Scott Meyer of Columbia, Missouri. Kelly Fischbach will serve as the Team Leader, with Mike Lenser of Whitewater, Wisconsin working at the athletic trainer.
The U23 men’s wheelchair basketball program is an international development team that serves as NWBA pipeline to the U.S. Men’s National Team. This program provides elite youth athletes the opportunity to compete at the international level. Team USA has reached the championship game in three of the last five U23 World Championships, having won in 2005 and 2009. The United States claimed a bronze medal in 2001, and did not participate in 2013.
2017 America’s Wheelchair Basketball World Championships Qualifier
Buenos Aires, Argentina
USA def. Brazil, 64-38
USA def. Chile, 96-31
USA def. Argentina, 69-18
USA def. Brazil, 65-48
USA def. Chile, 78-18
January 28 Argentina vs. USA