Thompson, Jordan carry offensive load for Team USA, while Gasol manages game-high 23 points for Spain
POSTED: Aug 19, 2016 9:31 PM ET
RIO DE JANEIRO — The United States Men's National Team advanced to the gold medal game of the Olympic basketball tournament with an 82-76 victory over Spain on Friday afternoon.
The U.S. led by as many as 10 points midway through the second quarter before Spain cut the lead down to three by scoring on eight straight possessions. But that was Spain's only real offensive run of the game. It shot just 7-for-24 from 3-point range
Spain also couldn't keep the U.S. off the glass. The Americans grabbed 21 offensive rebounds, leading to countless second opportunities and long possessions.
Klay Thompson scored 17 points in the first half and finished with a team-high 22, shooting 4-for-8 from 3-point range. DeAndre Jordan got his second straight start and overwhelmed Spain with his size and athleticism, finishing with nine points, 16 rebounds and four blocks.
Spain's Pau Gasol played with a right calf injury, scored 12 points in the first quarter, and finished with a game-high 23.
The game featured five technical fouls in the first half, with a T giving Durant three fouls with 3:40 to go in the second quarter and another giving Nikola Mirotic four fouls less than a minute later. DeMarcus Cousins didn't pick up any technicals, but still fouled out in the third quarter.
The U.S. is now 137-5 in Olympic competition and takes a 52-game winning streak in international tournaments into Sunday's final, where it will play Serbia (4-3). Serbia, which demolished Australia 87-61 in the other semifinal, gave the U.S. a major challenge in pool play, losing by three points when Bogdan Bogdanovic's game-tying 3-point attempt was off the mark at the buzzer.
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