Pan Am Basketball: USA Loses To Mexico, Will Play For Bronze On Sunday

GUADALAJARA, MEXICO - OCTOBER 27: Head coach Nathan Moe Tibbets of the USA reacts during the Men's Basketball Preliminary Round match between the U.S. and Brazil during Day 13 of the XVI Pan American Games at CODE Alcalde on October 27, 2011 in Guadalajara, Mexico. (Photo by Dennis Grombkowski/Getty Images)

The 2011 Pan-Am Games was supposed to be the first time Team USA brought back a gold medal since Michael Jordan did it in 1983. That will not be the case, however, as Lorenzo Mata-Real and Mexico's national team picked up a 71-55 victory to advance to the gold medal game while sending the USA to play for Bronze.

Mexico certainly wasn't a team to overlook, as I wrote in the game preview, but it didn't seem as though that was the problem for head coach Nate Tibbetts and his crew of D-League players. Instead, their lack of chemistry and any sort of prolonged training camp seemed to do them in as their shooting couldn't overcome some sloppy play.

USA was led by Leo Lyons with 13 points, though eight of those came early in the game, while Jerome Dyson had 10 points and six turnovers. Blake Ahearn played well while he was in, scoring nine points on 3-of-6 shooting from the field.

 

Former UCLA fan-favorite Lorenzo Mata-Real scored 12 points, grabbed nine rebounds and swatted away four shots to lead Mexico while former D-League player Jovan Harris scored 15 points, grabbed five rebounds and dished four assists.

Team USA will play the loser of Saturday's match-up between the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico for the bronze while the winner goes for gold.
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