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TICKET PUNCHED; WE’RE GOING TO PARIS! Team USA Women’s Wheelchair Basketball Defeats Rival Canada, 62-56, to Secure Gold at the 2023 Santiago Parapan American Games

By NWBA, 11/24/23, 11:30PM CST


SANTIAGO, CHILE (Nov. 24, 2023) – For the first time since 2015, the Team USA Women’s Wheelchair Basketball team is Parapan American Games Champions, defeating Canada, 62-56, in the 2023 Santiago Gold Medal Match to secure gold and earn the tournament’s automatic bid to the 2024 Paris Paralympic Games.

Team USA turned in a gutsy performance against its archrival to secure bragging rights in the Americas for the first time in eight years, avenging the team’s loss in the final in 2019. It was a dominant overall performance for the Americans, who went 5-0 in the tournament, defeating Chile (96-10), Peru (80-12), Argentina (87-26) and Brazil (60-30) along the way.

Lindsey Zurbrugg dropped a game-high 17 points in the victory along with six assists and four rebounds. Rose Hollermann added 13 points, seven rebounds and a tied game-high seven assists in the win for the United States.

“We’re feeling great. It’s always great to win a game, especially when you do it with the teamwork that we did today,” said Hollermann. “The whole entire game we were aggressive on chairs defensively. I feel like we locked them down and we were able to move the ball, play together and focus on one another.”

Tied at 6 in the game's early moments, Team USA used a 6-2 run to create separation and lead 14-10 after one-quarter of play.

The women scored six of the first eight points of the second quarter to lead 20-14. Canada chipped away at the margin, using an 8-2 spurt to tie the game at 22 with 2:40 remaining in the half. Team USA scored the last six points of the half, scoring on each of its final three possessions to lead at intermission, 28-22.

Team USA began to pull away in the second half, scoring the first six points to open up a double-digit lead advantage and led 46-35 after three quarters. Canada got within six in the final moments of the contest, but did not get any closer, as Team USA claimed the victory and gold.

Courtney Ryan produced 12 points and six assists in the win, while Becca Murray, competing in her fifth Parapan American Games, finished with 10 points, five rebounds, two assists and two steals.

“We secured our spot for Paris,” Ryan said. “We’re excited but the work isn’t over. This is just the beginning for Team USA.” 

“It feels amazing to qualify for another Paralympic Games, we’re so excited,” said Hollermann.

Team USA shot 44-percent from the field and forced Canada into 11 turnovers in the victory.

Complete stats from the gold medal game can be found here.

For more photos of this event (courtesy of Wheelchair Sports Federation), click here.

The 2024 Paris Paralympic Games are scheduled for August 28, 2024 – September 8, 2024.