Australia Upsets Spain to Reach Semis
Duncan drives baseline against Spain

July 5, 2013

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PRAGUE, Czech Republic - Boise State incoming freshman Nicholas Duncan helped Australia to an 87-76 win against Spain Friday, in the quarterfinals of the 2013 FIBA U19 World Championship. Duncan netted 12 points as the Emus ran out to a big lead and held on against the higher-seeded Spaniards.

Australia—the number-four seed out of Group F—knocked off the top seed from Group E after seeing a 24-point second-half lead trimmed to six in the late stages. Australia will face Serbia in the first semifinal at 10 a.m. (MT). The game can be seen live on ESPN3.

The Emus ran their offense through Duncan for much of the first quarter as the future Bronco scored or assisted on 13 of the team’s first 15 points. He scored seven of his own during the stretch, including a corner three after getting his defender to fly by with a head and shoulder fake.

Spain notched the first five points of the second quarter to take its only lead of the game at 20-19 on a three-pointer. Duncan responded the next time down the floor with a triple from straight away to climb back on top. Australia never looked back. His three sparked a 17-2 run, putting the Emus up 36-22 midway through the second quarter.

Australia held a 45-31 advantage at halftime. The Emus stretched their lead to as many as 24 in the third quarter and went into the final stanza up 18 at 66-48. They would need every bit of that cushion in the final period.

Spain started the fourth quarter on a 15-4 spurt to get within seven points. Australia appeared to have regained control with just under three minutes to go and the lead back to a dozen. However the Europeans had one last charge left, scoring seven points in 80 seconds to make it a six-point game with just over a minute to play. Duncan’s final bucket extended the lead to nine with 58 seconds to play and sealed the victory.

Duncan was 5-for-10 from the floor in the game, including 2-of-3 from beyond the arc. He is 5-for-6 from three-point range in the last two games and currently leads the entire tournament in three-point percentage (57.1 percent, 8-for-14).

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