Late surge sends Canadian men to win over U.S. at GLOBL JAM

Keyonte George scored a game-high 19 points, but Emanuel Miller recorded a 13-point, 10-rebound double-double, and Canada defeated the USA 69-67.

TORONTO — The Canadian U23 men’s national team rallied to beat the United States 69-67 and improved to 2-0 at the GLOBL JAM international basketball showcase on Wednesday.

Marcus Carr led Canada with 14 points and Emanuel Miller had 13 points and 10 rebounds. A three-point play from Miller gave Canada a one-point lead with 1:30 remaining after Canada had trailed by eight points earlier in the fourth.

Carr followed up Miller’s three-point play with a three-pointer of his own to extend Canada’s lead to four with 53 seconds remaining. Carr would go on to seal the victory by making it a two-possession game with a pair of free throws with four seconds left.

The victory came in front of an enthusiastic crowd at Mattamy Athletic Centre with NBA players Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Scottie Barnes in the front row. Also sitting courtside were the mothers of Miller and Carr.

“It’s amazing,” Miller said. “All of these greater players, on our home soil? To be able to defend home court, it’s everything. My mom means everything to me. She’s my backbone. She’s everything. She’s supported me throughout my whole life and I’m going to do the same for her. Playing in front of her on this home court means a lot.”

Keyonte George led the Americans with 19 points, while Jalen Bridges had 13.

The Canadians came back to win the game, overcoming a difficult third quarter where the team had just one field goal in the final 5:31 of the quarter as the U.S. went into the fourth ahead by six.

Like Miller, Carr was thrilled to be able to put on a show in front of his loved ones.

“My family doesn’t really get a lot of opportunities to come out and see me play, so to play in front of them, to play in front of my extended family, to have this broadcast on Sportsnet played across the country, it’s just huge to have this opportunity. I’m very grateful,” he said.

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Canada struck first in the final frame as Quincy Guerrier hit a huge three-pointer to trim the deficit to three points, but the U.S. was quick to respond as Bridges went on a 5-0 run of his own to give the Americans. an eight-point advantage, their largest of the game, with 7:26 remaining.

Credit Team Canada head coach Nathaniel Mitchell, for a game plan that didn’t include panicking in the fourth.

“Just stay calm, collected and smooth,” Miller said of the team’s mindset. “Follow the game plan and execute down the stretch. And that’s what we did.”

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In a game that featured plenty of lead changes and ties, the Canadians had an advantage getting to the line where they made 28 of 38 attempts. In comparison, the U.S. made just 13 of 16 free-throw attempts. The U.S. attempted 13 more field goals than Canada, but the home side outrebounded the visitors 54-39.

The Canadians led 18-16 after the opening quarter, but were outscored 19-13 in the second to go into the half trailing by four, 35-31. The first half was a grind-it-out affair with both teams shooting just 29 per cent from the floor.

Canada faces Italy on Thursday at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT on Sportsnet 360. The Americans meet Brazil on Thursday at 2 p.m. ET / 11 a.m. PT on Sportsnet.

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