Home National Teams London 2012 Hosts Turkey begin with win

Hosts Turkey begin with win

Hosts Turkey started their Olympic Qualifying campaign with a 65-53 win over Puerto Rico in Ankara on Monday evening.

American-born Kuanitra Hollingsworth and guard Tugba Palazoglu led the victors with 13 points each as they steered Turkey comfortably, leading from the second minute onwards after the Puerto Ricans hit the opening bucket of the contest.

Jazmine Sepulveda led all scorers in vain with 20 points for Puerto Rico.

Turkey led 24-12 after the first quarter following a strong 9-0 finish from the hosts in the last two-and-a-half minutes.

Puerto Rico put up more of a fight in a defensive-minded second quarter, but still trailed 35-22, missing a bundle of three-point attempts. Turkey looked off the pace, but still maintained their double-digit advantage.

Buckets from Hollingsworth half-way through the third period gave Turkey a 44-26 lead as they looked to put the game to bed. But Puerto Rico came back and narrowed the gap to 44-33 with four minutes left in the quarter.

A bucket from Stephanie Rosado with 13 seconds left gave the Puerto Ricans some hope, but they still trailed 50-39 after three.

Despite Puerto Rico narrowing it to single-digits, Turkey hit back when it mattered to claim their first win as they look to book a place in London at the end of the month.

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