Canada edged by France at Men’s IWBF Repechage Tournament

Canadian Paralympic Committee

April 14, 2024

Colin Higgin's 26-point effort wasn't enough to power Canada to victory.

Canada in action against France. | Le Canada en action contre la France.

By Wheelchair Basketball Canada
Photo Credit: Grégory Picout/Fédération Française Handisport

France edged Canada 61-55 on Saturday at the Men’s IWBF Repechage Tournament in Antibes.
 
Colin Higgins (Rothesay, N.B.) scored a game-high 26 points, nine rebounds and six assists. Patrick Anderson (Fergus, Ont.) added 18 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while Garrett Ostepchuk (Regina, Sask.) finished with three points, two rebounds and two steals. 
 
“We got better, we shot a little better, we got a little more used to the court and the rims – the rim is a little bit tight, it’s tight for everyone. It’s all about building,” said co-captain Bo Hedges. “We got better compared to Friday, and we have one more big game on Sunday against Iran before we go into the winner-take-all game. It’s just a moving-forward process here.
 
“We need to cut down on our turnovers, work on getting ourselves good shots, and build confidence in the shots we take—those are the big things moving into Sunday.”
 
The Senior Men’s National Team finished shooting 20 of 52 from the field while France shot 40 per cent in the win. Team Canada outscored France 15-14 in the fourth and pulled to within four three minutes into the period, but that’s as close as Canada would get.
 
Canada opened the second half by outscoring France 12-7 3:47 into the third and leading by four, 39-35, giving the SMNT its first two-possession lead of the game. However, France responded, closing out the quarter on a 12-1 surge and leading 47-40 through three periods.

The SMNT trailed by one, 28-27 at the break. Anderson paced Canada with 13 points, five rebounds and three assists. Higgins added eight points, four rebounds and three assists. Canada shot 13 of 31 from the field and limited France to 34 per cent shooting through two quarters. Canada went on a 6-0 run midway through the second to pull to within two, 18-16 and outscored France 17-14 in the second period.

France closed out the first period on a 5-0 run and led 14-10 after one period. Anderson led the way with four points. Following the opening 10, Ostepchuk, Higgins, and Chad Jassman (Calgary, Alta.) each had two points.
 
The repechage tournament is a final opportunity for teams who did not qualify for the Paris Games through their zone qualifier to earn a spot at the Paralympic Games.
 
The tournament consists of two groups that will establish rankings for crossover matches. The knockout stage will unveil the four teams that earn a berth in the 2024 Paralympic Games.
 
Up next, Canada wraps up group play against Iran on Sunday at 7:15 a.m. ET. Fans can watch the action on CBC Sports digital platforms, including the free CBC Gem streaming service, cbcsports.ca, and the CBC Sports app for iOS and Android devices. Tournament schedule and full results can be found here.
 
Full stats from Canada’s game against France can be found here

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