USA survives test from Lithuania
Olympic Games Basketball
Lithuania 94 - 99 United States
Russia 77 - 74 Spain
Tunisia 69 - 73 France
Czech Rep 61 - 88 United States
France 80 - 77 Great Britain
LONDON - Still unbeaten, but perhaps more importantly, the U.S. is no longer untested. The Americans got a game against Lithuania - and then some. They got a scare.
Two days after running and gunning to a record-shattering 83-point win, the U.S. men’s Olympic basketball team had to come back in the fourth quarter for a 99-94 win over a fearless Lithuania team that had the Americans in serious trouble until the closing minutes.
LeBron James scored 9 of his 20 points in the final four minutes for the U.S. (4-0), which had looked nearly invincible in thrashing Nigeria 156-73 on Thursday night and breaking several records.
But the Americans were reminded that the path to the gold medal is loaded with traps and Lithuania nearly sprang one.
Carmelo Anthony added 20 points, Kevin Durant 16 and Chris Paul added seven rebounds, six assists and four of the U.S. team’s 17 steals.
Linas Kleiza scored 25 to lead Lithuania, which led by 84-82 with 5:50 to play. After the U.S. took a three-point lead, Lithuania would not go away and pulled within 87-86 on Darius Songaila’s bucket with 4:12 left.
That’s when James, who has already won an MVP trophy and NBA title this year, took control.