RIO DE JANEIRO (Rio 2016 Olympic Games) - Spain advanced to the Semi-Finals of the Olympic Basketball Tournament for the third time in a row after making light work of France in Wednesday's second Quarter-Final, beating them 92-67.
The Spaniards jumped out to a 15-8 lead and did not trail the rest of the way as Les Bleus could not contain their offensive onslaught on one end of the court or match it at the other.
Spain forward Nikola Mirotic hit 4-of-6 three-pointers as part of a 16-point first-half performance. He scored his team's first seven points of the third quarter to extend the lead to 50-33 and that effectively put the game beyond France's reach.
Turning Point: Willy Hernangomez came off the bench and accounted for Spain's opening six points of the second period to increase their lead from 19-16 to 25-17. Fellow sub Felipe Reyes then hit a pair of free-throws for the game's first double digit lead, 27-17. When starters Ricky Rubio, Mirotic and Pau Gasol returned to close out the first half, they made sure to maintain that advantage and added to it.
Stats Don't Lie: Spain shot very well from two-point range. They were 10-of-14 (71 percent) in the first half), 17-of-25 (68 percent) by the end of the third quarter and 25-of-39 (64 percent) for the game.
Hero: Mirotic and Hernangomez seemed to score at will and France could not slow them down. Mirotic finished with a game-high 23 points on 9-of-15 from the field, including 5-of-8 from beyond the arc. Hernangomez came off the bench and contributed 16 points in 17 minutes.
The Bottom Line: After losing their first two games of the competition, Spain appear to be firing on all cylinders and have now won four in a row, all of them by wide margins of victory. As for France, this will bring back memories of 2012 when they lost to Spain at the same stage of the competition. On that occasion however, the game was a lot closer. This defeat is expected to bring to a close the international careers of Tony Parker, Florent Pietrus and Mickael Gelabale, who all announced their intentions of retiring from the national team after the Olympics.