Aug 22, 2016

    US women rout Spain for 6th consecutive basketball gold

    STAKING its claim to rank among the greatest Olympic dynasties ever assembled, the United States women's basketball team captured their sixth consecutive gold medal and eighth in nine Games yesterday.

    An overwhelming 101-72 victory over Spain in the final stretched the US Olympic win streak to 49 games since a 1992 semi-final loss. The Americans improved to 89-1 over the past 20 years in global tournaments.

    Diana Taurasi and Lindsay Whalen led the US squad with 17 points each while Maya Moore added 14.

    "It's pretty incredible," Taurasi said. "We had a goal to win the gold medal but there's something more to it than that.

    "It's not about one person, one coach - it's about, 'How can we make this the best basketball team ever?'"

    Taurasi, Tamika Catchings and Sue Bird matched an Olympic basketball record with their fourth gold medals each, tying former US standouts Lisa Leslie and Teresa Edwards for the most golds by any player, man or woman.

    The silver is the first Olympic women's basketball medal secured by the Spaniards, whose best prior showing was fifth in 1992 and 2008.

    Serbia beat France in the bronze medal game.

    The championship game was a rematch of the 2014 Women's Basketball World Cup final won by the Americans 77-64. But it more resembled the US women's 103-63 rout of Spain in a Rio group stage encounter as the US women improved to 10-0 all-time against their European rivals.