Sky Overseas Updates 2022-23: FIBA Women's World Cup - Finals

October 1, 2022 - Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) - Chicago Sky News Release

CHICAGO - The 2022 FIBA Women's World Cup continued elimination games with a gold medal on the line, with two Chicago Sky players taking action with their respective countries: Kahleah Copper (USA) and Li Yueru (China).

The United States came out victorious against China in the gold medal game on Saturday, defeating Li Yueru and China, 83-61 to claim its fourth straight FIBA Women's World Cup. With this victory, Team USA has now qualified for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. The U.S. went an undefeated 8-0 in Sydney, defeating China (twice), Canada, Serbia, Puerto Rico, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Korea and Belgium. FIBA announced that the 2022 Women's World Cup MVP was A'ja Wilson.

Copper was once again ruled OUT for the Finals, announced by USA Basketball earlier yesterday. Copper also missed the Semi-Final game against Canada with a hip injury and was reevaluated again by the team's medical staff before the gold medal game, per USA Basketball. She initially left the Quarter-Final game against Serbia with 2:59 left to go in the second quarter. The Chicago Sky has no further updates.

The gold medal win adds to Copper's growing list of accolades, including 2021 WNBA Finals MVP, a 2x WNBA All-Star, WNBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week in June 2022, EuroLeague MVP, Spanish League MVP and 2022 champion with Perfumer - as Avenida and a 2022 Spanish Cup winner.

For China, Li finished with a double-double 19 points (team-high) on 80.0% field goal shooting and 12 rebounds in 29 minutes of play. China, ended its four-game winning streak and settled for the silver medal. The last time China reached the Final was back in 1994, but lost to Brazil.

The gold medal game recorded 15,895 attendees at the Sydney SuperDome.

USA/China played each other earlier this week in group play, with the U.S. victorious in a 77-63 win. This was the smallest margin of victory for the U.S. in the 2022 games. The United States is now 8-0 all-time against China in the Women's World Cup. This was the first time the U.S. and China have met in the gold medal game.

Emma Meesseman, Julie Allemand and the rest of Team Belgium fell short of their ultimate goal this year, finishing its 2022 World Cup run in the Quarter-Finals against the host country Australia and finished third in group play. They recorded wins against Korea, Puerto Rico and Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the Quarter-Finals, Allemand led the team in scoring with 15 points to go along with seven assists, two rebounds and one steal.

In Belgium's Group Phase game against Bosnia-Herzegovina, Meesseman left the game with 8:24 left in the third quarter with a left calf injury. She has withdrawn from the competition and her timeline to return has not been determined.

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