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Junior Men’S National Basketball Team Ends Up 5th Overall At Fiba Centrobasket U-17 Championship

By RENALDO DORSETT

Sports Reporter

rdorsett@tribunemedia.net

THE junior men’s national basketball team ended the tournament with a pair of wins in the reclassification round, finished fifth at the FIBA Centrobasket Under-17 Championship for Men and will not advance to the 2016 Tournament of the Americas.

At the tournament hosted in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas finished with a 3-2 record overall, but won just a single game in group play before they were relegated to the lower bracket. Despite the end result, D’Andre Vilmar emerged as a rising star in the region.

The 6’4” guard out of Abaco and Roman Catholic High School in Pennsylvania, led the tournament in scoring at 19.6 points per game and rebounding at 12.4 boards per game. He was also second in assists as he dished out 4.6 per game.

Phillip McKenzie finished the tournament at 10.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per game. Sherman Robinson scored 7.8 points and added two blocks per game, Adrian Thompson added 8.4 points and 2.4 steals per game while Franco Miller scored 9.4 per game.

Puerto Rico successfully defended home court and took the tournament championship with a 101-57 win over the US Virgin Islands in the gold medal game.

The Dominican Republic defeated Mexico 76-60 to take the bronze and claim the final spot to the 2016 FIBA Americas Under-18 Championship.

In their final game of the tournament, the Bahamas defeated Guatemala 74-69 to take fifth place.

Vilmar led the team with 20 points and 13 rebounds, Robinson and Howard Hinzey each finished with 10 points and Corey Sands scored eight points and pulled down nine rebounds.

The Bahamas led 20-19 at the end of the first quarter and 37-33 headed into the half.

Guatemala would rally late in the second half and trim the deficit to just one headed into the fourth quarter, 54-53.

In the game prior, Vilmar finished with 19 points, 16 rebounds and five assists in the Bahamas’ 61-50 win over Costa Rica.

Miller scored 14 while Thompson added nine points and three steals.

The Bahamas placed themselves in a hole on day one when a late rally fell just short in the game’s final moments and they suffered an 82-79 loss to the USVI.

Vilmar again stuffed the stat sheet for the Bahamas and led the team with 18 points, 17 rebounds and seven assists.

McKenzie finished with 15 points and 14 rebounds, Thompson scored 14 with seven rebounds and five steals while Robinson finished with 11 points.

Following the opening game loss, the Bahamas bounced back in dominating fashion with a 92-46 win over Barbados.

Vilmar finished with a near triple double for the second consecutive game with 21 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and four steals.

Vilmar finished with a near triple double for the second consecutive game with 21 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and four steals.

Miller scored 15 points off the bench, Deveaux added 12 points, Travaughn Nicholls finished with 11 while Robinson added eight points and five blocked shots.

With their backs against the wall in a “must-win” situation, Team Bahamas came up short against the top ranked team when they fell to eventual champions Puerto Rico, 93-74.

Vilmar led the Bahamas with 20 points, McKenzie finished with 14 points and eight rebounds, Miller scored 11 and Sherman Robinson chipped in with eight points and nine rebounds.

It marked the second consecutive time a Bahamian under-17 team finished fifth at Centrobasket, after the 2013 tournament in El Salvador.

The Bahamas last qualified for the Tournament of the Americas at the junior level in 2013.

At the Centrobasket Under-15 Championships in El Salvador, the Bahamas finished third with a bronze medal win over Puerto Rico.

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