In Tenerife, Spain, the USA Basketball Women’s National Team captured a third straight FIBA World Cup, defeating Australia on Sunday night, 73-56 . The historic win also qualified Team USA for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo .
Since 1996, Team USA has amassed an impressive 100-1 record in the Olympics, OLY Qualifiers, FIBA World Cup and FIBA Americas. USA has captured a record nine gold medals, one silver medal and two bronze medals in World Cup play prior to the team’s most recent victory.
This is also the 22nd win for Team USA in FIBA competition.
The quadrennial FIBA World Cup has been contested 18 times since 1953.
This year’s competition format featured a round-robin competition in preliminary play with four groups comprised of four teams each. Following the preliminary round, the first-place team in each group advanced directly to the quarterfinals, while the second- and third-place teams in each group competed in “quarterfinal play-in games.” Quarterfinals winners advanced to the semifinals, and the gold medal game was played on Sunday, Sept. 30.
To put the dominance of Team USA into perspective, one can compare this team’s record to the stats of the men’s national team:
The men’s record is 123-27 overall, with an 82% winning percentage and a margin of victory of 33 points per game in their last competition season, in 2014.
The women’s team has a 99% winning percentage and a margin of victory of 35.5 points per game in this year’s World Cup games.
The USA men’s team has a 45-game winning streak.
With Sunday’s World Cup victory, the USA Basketball Women’s Team advanced its winning streak to 46 games.
Individual accolades from Team USA’s FIBA World Cup win
This victory is also the first gold medal for Dawn Staley in World Cup competition, as as head coach and first gold in World Cup competition for Dawn Staley. The University of South Carolina head women’s basketball coach has won two gold medals as an assistant coach and three Olympic gold medals as a player. Staley is the first to ever win gold as a player, an assistant coach and a head coach.
Seattle Storm veteran Sue Bird also had a record-breaking night in the gold medal game, becoming the only player in history, male or female, to win five World Cup medals.