Venezuela was the underdog who best threatened a power on the first day of the 2011 FIBA Americas Championship on Tuesday, and it might earn that moniker again on Wednesday. Venezuela fell 92-89 to the Dominican Republic in Group A action in Mar del Plata on Wednesday thanks to a 11-point fourth quarter comeback by the D.R.
Venezuela led 74-63 over the Dominicans entering the fourth, but the D.R. outscored Venezuela 29-15 in the final frame. The Hawks' Al Horford led the D.R. with 19 points and 10 rebounds, while frontcourt partner Jack Michael Martinez added 18 points and 14 rebounds (seven offensive). The Pistons' Charlie Villanueva comes off the bench for John Calipari's Dominican team; he scored just five points in 16 minutes.
Oscar Torres led Venezuela with 19 points, and the Grizzlies' Greivis Vasquez added 16, with all three of his makes coming from long-range. Venezuela fell to 0-2 in group play, but can likely get to the second stage of the tournament with a win Thursday over Cuba. The Dominicans are looking to win a strong seed heading into the quarters, and face Canada on Thursday.