PORTLAND, Ore. -- If the Nike Hoop Summit has taught us anything it is that the world-wide playing field is leveling as the game of basketball continues to develop on a global scale. With redemption on their minds the USA Junior National Select Basketball Team came into the game focused on avenging last year's defeat at the hands of the Junior World Select Team. Leading at the half, the US Team took control early only to see the World Team, led by Kentucky-bound forward Enes Kanter, dominate the third quarter to take a 74-62 lead heading into the final stanza. The Americans exploded for a 39 point quarter in pulling away for a 101-97 victory; mission accomplished! Some observations from the game: • Both teams traded leads throughout the final quarter; with the game on the line Team USA saddled up its top two players, 6-8 power forward Jared Sullinger (Columbus, Ohio/Northland) and 6-7 shooting guard Harrison Barnes (Ames, Iowa). Sullinger (22 points, 8 rebounds) took care of the dirty work, scoring big baskets in the paint, while Barnes (27 points, 7 rebounds) made crucial perimeter shots that led to the US triumph. As the top two players in the 2010 class it was great to again see them both rise to the challenge when it mattered most.
To continue reading this article you must be an Insider