Argentina dominates Panama in overtime; Venezuela, Uruguay victorious

Updated: August 27, 2007, 2:45 AM ET
Associated Press

LAS VEGAS -- Argentina erased a nine-point deficit over the last four minutes of regulation then dominated overtime for a 109-92 victory over Panama on Sunday night that eliminated the loser from the FIBA Americas tournament.

Paolo Quinteros had seven of his 22 points in the overtime for Argentina (4-0), which finished as the top seed in its five-team pool and will open the second round on Monday against Venezuela (1-3).

Gary Forbes, who plays for Massachusetts, had 29 points for Panama (1-3), which lost two games in the first round in overtime and was eliminated from the tournament after losing a three-team tiebreaker with Puerto Rico and Mexico.

Jamar Warren's 3-pointer with 4:10 left gave Panama a 77-68 lead, but Quinteros scored seven points in Argentina's 13-2 run that put it ahead 81-79 with 1:30 to go.

Forbes' three-point play and a free throw by Joel Munoz gave Panama an 85-83 lead with 37 seconds left. Diego Lo Grippo dunked after a spin move in the lane with 27 seconds to tie it and both teams missed a shot at winning in regulation -- Forbes on a straightaway 3 with 5 seconds left as the shot clock expired and Pablo Prigioni on a halfcourt shot that bounced off the rim at the buzzer.

The overtime was all Argentina as it scored the first seven points and went 4-for-4 from 3-point range in the extra 5 minutes. Panama went 2-for-10 from the field.

Luis Scola, who signed with the Houston Rockets, added 20 points for Argentina, which matched the United States' 4-0 first-round record, while Carlos Delfino, who plays for the Toronto Raptors, added 19.

Jaime Lloreda, who played for LSU, had 21 points for Panama, which opened the tournament with an 88-84 overtime loss to Uruguay.

In other action on Sunday:

Venezuela 100, U.S. Virgin Islands 90

Greivis Vasquez extended his summer vacation a few more days.

Vasquez and Hector Romero had near triple-doubles Sunday to lead Venezuela to a win over the U.S. Virgin Islands. Venezuela advanced to the second round of the FIBA Americas tournament.

Vasquez, who will be a sophomore at Maryland, had 18 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds, while Romero had 29 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists for Venezuela (1-3), which finished fourth in its five-team pool. It will play four games in the second round starting with Argentina, the top seed from the other pool, on Monday.

Vasquez played 38 minutes in the win over the U.S. Virgin Islands (0-4). Venezuela pulled away from a 37-33 halftime lead with a 12-4 run. It was capped by a 3-pointer by Romero on a kickout pass from Vasquez.

Vasquez had another impressive spurt in the fourth quarter when he hit a 3, had a steal that led to a layup for teammate Carlos Cedeno and then scored on a drive to make it 87-70 with 4:43 to go.

Vasquez finished with nine turnovers, which he conceded was "way too many."

Jason Edwin, who played at Kent State, led the U.S. Virgin Islands with 32 points.

Uruguay 91, Mexico 82

Nicolas Mazzarino scored 36 points, including a tournament-best eight 3-pointers as Uruguay beat Mexico.

The 6-foot Mazzarino, who plays professionally in Italy, matched Brazil's Leandro Barbosa for the highest point total in the tournament that will decide two berths in the Beijing Olympics. Barbosa had 36 points Saturday in a victory over the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Esteban Batista had 25 points and 15 rebounds for Uruguay (3-1), which finished second in its five-team pool and will open second-round play Monday against Canada (2-2).

Romel Beck had 28 points for Mexico (1-3), which advanced to the second round as the No. 4 seed from its pool. Mexico will play the United States, the top seed from Group B, in the second round on Monday.

Mexico hurt itself late at the free-throw line, missing six of 10 over the final 3:26.

Mazzarino, who had seven 3-pointers total over the first three games and averaged 14.3 points, hit his eighth of the game with 1:37 left to give Uruguay an 85-77 lead. Mazzarino, who finished 8-for-13 on 3s, and Batista combined to go 6-for-6 from the free-throw line over the final 53 seconds.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press