Taurasi's 15 point Third Quarter Explosion Overwhelm's Australia In A 104-89 USA Victory


U.S. Guard Diana Taurasi went on a 15 point explosion in the third to blow the game wide open

They say defense win's championships. If that's the case then the gold medal needs to be shipped to Colorado immediately. USA put on a defensive clinic as they cruised to a 104-89 win over Australia. Diana Taurasi led the way with 20 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assist while Elena Delle Donne added 19 points as well as 5 rebounds and Maya Moore nearly finished with a triple double after posting 13 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assist. Australia, who are seen by many as the second best team in the world, showed why early by jumping out to a 17-11 lead midway through the first quarter. Then, the U.S. woke up. Led by an unconscious Delle Donne, and a determined Angel McCoughtry (12 points), the U.S. went off on Australia, going on a 30-8 run. Australia, would not go away. center Elizabeth Cambage (22 points, 8 rebounds) and point guard Leilani Mitchell (18 points), closed the half out on fire to shrink the deficit to six, as the U.S. led 54-48.

Almost exactly like the match-up against France in Delaware last Wednesday, U.S. head coach Geno Auriemma demanded guard Diana Taurasi to be more aggressive in the second half after shooting 1 of 4 in the first half. Taurasi delivered, torching Australia for 15 points, including three 3-pointers, to start the third quarter. The solo run put USA out in front 77-58 and they would never be threatened again.

"Maybe because I've been around her a long time, four years in college and then these last eight years with the Olympic Team - I've always been of the opinion that as long as we have Diana Taurasi on the court playing with our team that we have a chance to win every single game that we play." Auriemma said

USA defeated France, Canada and Australia by an average of 25.7 points during it's exhibition tour. The team will head to Rio Tuesday evening to continue their quest for a sixth straight gold medal.

Elena Delle Donne was hot all game long scoring 19 points on 7 of 10 shooting from the field

Angel McCoughtry tenacious defense has been key to the U.S. winning average of 25.7 points per game during exhibition play

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