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Thursday June 21, 2012 Donovan and Team USA U18s are gold

Updated: 8:54am, June 21

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Team USA lost Wednesday night. Billy D and gold

The second quarter, that is.

The rest of the FIBA Americas U18 Championship game looked a lot like the previous four games, as Coach Billy Donovan and Team USA routed host Brazil 81-56 to win the tournament’s gold medal at Sao Sebastiao Dos Paraiso.

“I told our guys after that they’re the ones that made it all possible,” Donovan said after making a clean sweep -- five straight wins, all by at least 19 points, of his first crack at international play. “There was a lot of sacrifice. We had a lot of good players and I think they all understood that they all could probably score more, they all could probably do more, but maybe it wouldn’t be the best thing for our team. I was just really proud of the way they sacrificed for one another, they sacrificed for our country and they really wanted to win.”

The Americans led by eight, 24-16, after the first period, with Brazil making it a six-point game by halftime, much to the delight of the home crowd.

Team USA took over the game in the second half, pulling away to a 16-point edge by the end of the third quarter.

It was the sixth gold medal for Team USA in eight FIBA Americas U18 tournaments. Team USA is now 43-2 in U18 in the event.

The coaches and players left Brazil early Thursday morning, with Donovan expected back in Gainesville tonight.

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