San Antonio Spurs’ Tiago Splitter and Brazil earned a position in the 2012 London Olympic games earlier on Saturday evening. Now, Manu Ginobili and Argentina will be joining Brazil next year as Argentina defeated Puerto Rico 81-79 on Saturday in the 2011 FIBA Americas tournament.
The team that is known as “The Golden Generation” will have what could be their last chance together as a group next year to contend for another Olympic gold medal in London. For players like Ginobili and Fabricio Oberto, this is certain to be their last go around for international glory.
The game was a close one throughout then Puerto Rico took a 48-40 lead in the third quarter and Argentina came to life. Argentina went on an 8-0 run to tie the game and would outscore Puerto Rico 26-16 in the third quarter.
The teams would battle back-and-forth in the fourth quarter but after J.J. Barea shot a final heave for Puerto Rico and missed, the game ended with Argentina earning the win.
Ginobili finished as the second leading scorer for Argentina with 23 points, seven assists, two rebounds, one steal, and one key block in 36 minutes. Houston Rockets’ Luis Scola led Argentina in scoring with 27 points and three assists.
Dallas Mavericks’ J.J. Barea led Puerto Rico with 20 points and three assists.
Ginobili and Argentina will face Splitter and Brazil on Sunday in the final game of the 2011 FIBA Americas tournament.
(Photo: Yahoo Sports)