Nigeria beat Turkey for first ever FIBA World Cup win
Sarah Ogoke led all scorers with 22 points and Evelyn Akhator again got double figures as Nigeria won their first game at the FIBA Women's World Cup with a 74-68 defeat of Turkey on Sunday night.
D'Tigress shot 34 percent from the floor, a marginal increase from the 29 percent they recorded against Australia in their first game. But the Nigerians again out-hustled their opponents on the boards as they out-rebounded Turkey 43-39.
The also outscored Turkey on bench points 30-27, and recorded 14 fast break points to Turkey's six.
But as it was against Australia, the relative lack of size meant that they were again outscored 34-30 in the paint.
Isil Alben opened the scoring with a mid-range shot and led all scorers at the end of the first quarter with six points, as the Turks took a 15-7 lead.
But it took a lot of effort from D'Tigress -- who trailed 19-7 at the end of the first quarter, and needed a 21-0 scoring run in the third quarter, to put daylight between themselves and Turkey -- who led for a long period early in the game.
Bahar Caglar and Esra Torpuz extended Turkey's lead by 12 points to 19-7 early in the second quarter, before Sarah Ogoke sank a shot from range to make it 19-10.
D'Tigress then ramped-up their defencee, and went on a 9-0 run to cut the deficit to just two points at 23-21 with 4:32 left in the second quarter.
Turkey went into a time out and responded with a 5-0 run of their own to again increase the lead to 28-22, after which Atonye Nyigifa made one of two free throws to further cut into Turkey's lead.
The Turks extended their lead to 32-26, but Ogoke made sure D'Tigress went into the break with much to look forward to, when she sank her second three-point shot of the day to bring her scoring to double figures with 12 points - the most by any player, as the Nigerians closed the gap to 32-29.
D'Tigress, who never led against Australia, took the lead with 1:49 seconds played in the third quarter, after Ogoke sank two free throws, to make it a 36-35, and didn't relinquish the lead again.
Adaora Elonu, who had been 0-4 from the floor, sank a mid-range shot to make it 38-35, and start a run that stretched D'Tigress lead to 44-35, with Ogoke adding to the misery of the Turks with back-to-back three-pointers.
With D'Tigress in full flow, the rattled Turks committed one turnover after the other and missed open looks. The Nigerian lead ballooned to 12 points at 49-35 and Ekrem Memnun, the Turkish coach, called a time out.
But it was D'Tigress that came out of the brief break the better team as they further extended the lead to 52-35, before Cansu Koksal scored five points on back-to-back shots to reduce the lead to 52-40. Asena Yalcin then made a layup to make it 52-42 as the quarter ended.
And it was the Nigerians who started the fourth quarter on a brighter note by reeling off six points to extend their lead to 58-42.
Turkey stemmed the tide with a couple of Quanitra Hollingsworth layups on either side of free throws by Alben and Bahar Caglar to bring the score to 60-50.
Both teams then traded baskets until D'Tigress eked out the win.
Nigeria will face Argentina in the last group game on Tuesday.