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HomeNewsLocal newsISV Senior Men’s Basketball Team Drops Heart Breaker to Open Tournament

ISV Senior Men’s Basketball Team Drops Heart Breaker to Open Tournament

Bottom – Jahmai Jones-#4; Amir Nesbitt-#0; Miguel Lopez-#20; Miguel Arnold-#6; Xavier Richards-#11; Earl Baker Jr.-#22; Top – Ryan Ayers Assistant Coach; Jahseah Corbett-#5; Brandon Rasmussen-#8; Shaquan Jules-#7; Laron Smith-#10; Guy Ragland-#13; Romani Hansen-#14; Edniesha Curry Head Coach (Photo Courtesy of FIBA)

The United States Virgin Islands Senior Men’s Basketball Team (ISV) opened the International Basketball Federation Pre-Qualifying Olympic Tournament with a one-point loss to Chile in Santiago del Estero, Argentina, on Monday afternoon.

The game was nip and tuck the entire way, with both teams battling to keep their hopes alive of competing in the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France. Chile jumped out to an early 4-0 lead before Jahsean Corbett found Laron Smith all alone under the basketball for an easy two-hand dunk to open the scoring for ISV.  The first quarter ended with the South American country clinging to a one-point advantage. Chile strengthened their grip on the game outscoring the Virgin Islands 19-11 in the second, taking a nine-point lead into halftime.

From left, Miguel Lopez-#20; Romani Hansen-#14; and Guy Ragland-#13 of ISV stand at attention during the playing of the United States Virgin Islands national anthem during their game against Chile. (Photo Courtesy of FIBA)

ISV Coach Edniesha Curry should bottle up and save her halftime speech as the men of the Virgin Islands started the third with an 11-4 run. By the end of that ten-minute period, the game was tied at 50 going into the fourth and final quarter of the game. Both teams went ice cold from the field to open the final stanza before Corbett broke the ice with a three-point shot three minutes into the fourth.  Chile responded with a couple of two-point baskets, giving them a 55-54 lead just about midway through the last period. ISV found themselves trailing with under two minutes to go in the contest. Jahsean Corbett nailed a three-point shot to give the Virgin Islands a two-point lead with 1:26 to go in regulation. However, Chile’s Alejandro Vergara picked a great time to make his only basket of the game, draining a three-point shot of his own, giving his team a 62-61 advantage. That proved to be the final score of the game.

Laron Smith-#10 ISV, dunks the ball in FIBA Pre-Qualifying Game in Argentina. (Photo Courtesy of FIBA)

Nicolas Carvacho led the scoring for Chile with a game-high 23 points. Corbett was the top scorer for ISV with 22 points. Smith played well, contributing 10 points and snagging 13 rebounds in a losing effort. The United States Virgin Islands Senior Men play Columbia at 6:10 pm local time on Tuesday.

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