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August 9, 2009

Barnes and Selby shine for USA

MORE: USA struggles in Nike World Games

HILLSBORO, Ore.- The USA teams bounced back on Saturday at the Nike Global Challenge with three wins. Josh Selby was sensational once again and Harrison Barnes had an epic performance.

Consolation bracket: USA Midwest 103, Serbia 94

Barnes was a man possessed in the second half. Coming off a 10-point first half, Barnes began his charge midway through the third quarter with his team down eight points. When the dust settled after an overtime period, Barnes had a total of 46 points on 14-29 shooting, 6-13 from behind the arc and 12-13 from the line.

Simply put, Barnes willed his team to victory not only with his scoring but with his rebounding as well. He pulled down 14 rebounds with many of those being pivotal boards in traffic.

Barnes did get support from Cameron Clark, who scored 20 points on 7-14 shooting, 3-6 from the arc. And Jereme Richmond asserted himself on the boards, grabbing down 10.

Semifinals: USA East 89, Brazil 74

Josh Selby was the dominant performer in this game from start to finish. He kept the USA in the game early when Brazil was playing well and then finished them off in the fourth quarter with a barrage of points. He scored 30 points on 8-17 shooting, 0-4 from behind the arc and 14-15 from the line. He also grabbed six rebounds and dished out five assists.

Kyrie Irving was outstanding as well. Picking up where Selby left off when he subbed for Selby. And then the two played together when the USA put its best five on the court. Irving scored 17 points, getting to the line eight times and making all eight of those free throws. He also had five assists to only one turnover and had five steals.

Tobias Harris had to spend most of the second and third quarters on the bench in foul trouble. When he was in the game, though, he has an impossible match up for the Brazilian post players. Harris used his driving skills to score 14 points on 6-9 shooting, 1-2 from behind the arc.

Logging extra minutes because of Harris' foul trouble, 2012 prospect DaJuan Coleman was effective inside. He scored 10 points of 5-9 shooting and grabbed five rebounds.

Will Barton was the teams leading rebounder with eight, and Adonis Thomas played exceptional defense off the bench for the USA.

The most telling stat for the game was Brazil's poor three-point shooting percentage of 24.1 percent for the game. The USA's defensive effort deserves credit. Another noteworthy stat, the USA shot 27-30 from the free throw line while Brazil shot 11-17.

Semifinals: Canada 89, Senegal 71

This was Mangisto Arop's game as he poured in 24 points and grabbed 14 rebounds. An athletic small forward, Arop also shoots the ball well. He is going to be a nice addition to the Gonzaga roster.

Tristan Thompson scored 11 points on 4-14 shooting, 3-6 from the line and grabbed eight rebounds.

Myck Kabongo had 12 points on 4-13 shooting, 1-7 from behind the arc and had six assists and three steals.

Maurice Walker muscled his way to 13 points and 10 rebounds as well for Canada.

Consolation bracket: USA West/South 107, All-Asia Camp 82

Kendall Marshall's efficient point guard play and the frontcourt duo of Terrence Jones and C.J. Leslie were the story of this game.

Marshall dished out 10 assists to only two turnovers while also scoring eight points.

Jones was the game's high scorer with 22 points on 10-19 shooting and also blocked four shots. Leslie was once again an energizing force for his team. Along with his strong overall play, Leslie scored 17 points on 7-15 shooting.

Austin Rivers got hot in the second half and scored 21 points for the game with 15 of those points coming off three-pointers.

Quincy Miller led the USA in rebounding with eight boards.

Recruiting News

C.J. Leslie is still open in his recruitment, but he did provide some insight into his recruiting. Kentucky, North Carolina, Florida, Maryland and Connecticut are the five schools recruiting him the hardest, and two of them stand out to him.

"North Carolina stands out because they just won a national championship," said Leslie. "Kentucky stands out because it is a great program and my former point guard (John Wall) is there."

James Johnson indicated that he would like to get in as many visits as he can before he makes a decision. An August 15 visit is scheduled for Arizona, and he plans to check out Arizona State as well on that trip. A visit to California is also in the works, but a date hasn't been set.

Virginia is on the docket for an official visit in September. Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Connecticut are on the list of probable visits. Maryland might get an official visit as well.

Austin Rivers maintains that he is still committed to Florida but will visit other schools out of respect for his father Doc Rivers of the Boston Celtics. Noting that he is excited about looking at other schools, Rivers named Duke, North Carolina, UCLA and Connecticut as schools he plans to visit.

Kyle Wiltjer, who is taking advantage of his dual citizenship and playing for Canada, will visit Stanford and California in the near future. He is wide open in his recruitment but did not that Gonzaga, Arizona State, California stand out to him.

Tobias Harris said his visit to Kentucky went well and that the Wildcats are firmly on his list. He will officially visit Tennessee on September 12, and he also named Connecticut, Syracuse, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Louisville and Notre Dame as schools he is considering.

Adonis Thomas recently picked up offers from Florida, Oklahoma and Ohio State. North Carolina has yet to offer, but Thomas has been in communication with Roy Williams.

Josh Selby thinks he is visiting Connecticut soon, but could not officially confirm it, saying that his mother is handling his recruitment. Selby said his sole focus is on playing good basketball and that he doesn't even know what schools are recruiting him.



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