Nigeria’s D’Tigress have crashed out of the FIBA Women’s World Cup after the USA team edged them 71-40.
D’Tigress started the game on a winning note as they held USA to nine points in the first quarter, the first time ever that happened to USA in World Cup/Olympics history.
But the gallant girls were done in by the superior firepower and experience of the Americans in Friday’s clash in Tenerife, Spain.
After their loss, the team posted thanks and appreciation to their teeming fans on its official Twitter handle.
“The adventure ends here, but the journey continues. Thank you all for your support,” the tweets read.
Speaking at the end of the game, the D’Tigress’ Head Coach, Otis Hughley Jr said, “I love these girls. I have two biological daughters and I feel like I have 12 more daughters. I thought they fought really well in the first half. I think the difference in the game is who shot well.
“I thought we played exponentially above what we have. Our girls dug down until there was nothing left. I’ve never felt so happy after a 31-point loss.”
The gallantry of D’Tigress wasn’t lost on their illustrious opponents as USA play-caller, Dawn Staley said,
“It was a hard fought game. Nigeria came out and pressured us and it bothered us probably in the first 20 minutes of the game, and then we made an adjustment in the style of play. We started making plays.
“Hats go off to Nigeria, but at the same time I am proud of the team for making the adjustments needed and turning it around in the first.”
D’Tigress captured the imagination of the world after beating Greece and Turkey to get into the quarter-finals, a feat never achieved by an African nation in Basketball.