2013 FIBA Americas results: Puerto Rico stays unbeaten with win over Jamaica

Greg Smith-USA TODAY Sports

J.J. Barea led Puerto Rico (4-0) to victory over Jamaica, while Mexico and Uruguay also picked up wins.

Timberwolves point guard J.J. Barea scored 24 points while former Knick Renaldo Balkman added 20 points and nine rebounds to lift Puerto Rico to its fourth straight win at FIBA Americas, 88-82 over Jamaica.

With the win, Puerto Rico secured first place in Group A.

Puerto Rico jumped out to an early 12-0 lead on Monday and held Jamaica off the scoreboard for the first 4:35 of the game. But Jamaica came clawing back and eventually took its first lead at 64-63 on a basket from former Louisville Cardinal Samardo Samuels. His team then went up by five before Puerto Rico answered with a quick 9-3 spurt to grab the lead back. Samuels led Jamaica with 24 points in the losing effort.

Puerto Rico scored the last seven points of the game, while Jamaica turned the ball over four times in the last 53 seconds to stymie each scoring opportunity down the stretch.

Mexico 85 Dominican Republic 61 -- Orlando Mendez (26 points) led four Mexico players in double figures as his club rolled over the Dominican Republic on Monday. His teammate and current Atlanta Hawk, Gustavo Ayon, added 23 points and eight rebounds.

Although Mexico shot 54 percent overall, its defense was just as important in the win, holding the Dominican Republic to 36 percent shooting and just 5-16 from three. Jack Martinez's 16 points and seven rebounds were not enough to bolster the team's poor shooting and its 37-23 disadvantage on the glass.

Mexico led 29-20 after one quarter and didn't let up, taking a 14-point lead into the break. A 25-13 outburst in the final frame secured the easy victory.

Uruguay 79 Brazil 73 -- Uruguay held on to clinch a spot in the second round on Monday with a close win over Brazil.  Estaban Batista, who was the first Uruguayan to ever play in the NBA, led his squad with 22 points on 7-14 shooting and 13 rebounds. He was one of four players in double figures for Uruguay.

Brazil, which now must defeat Jamaica on Tuesday to advance, found it difficult to generate any offense outside of the paint. Guilherme Giovannoni had 20 points and ten rebounds, and was a big reason why Brazil tallied 15 second-chance points, and outscored Uruguay 34-24 inside.

Though Uruguay held a steady lead for much of the game, a fourth quarter eight minute long scoreless streak put the game in doubt. Brazil cut its deficit to a single point before Uruguay answered with a 6-0 run to seal the game.

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