Former Tiger Ferdinand Leads Team to Gold Medal Game
SAMARA, Russia (AP) — Marie Ferdinand scored 18 points and the WNBA Select team rallied in the fourth quarter Saturday to reach the Women’s World Cup final with a 71-68 victory over French champion US Valenciennes Olympic.
The Americans will play for the title Sunday against SGAU Samara, which upset European champion UMMC Yekaterinburg 75-67 in an all-Russian semifinal. Cheryl Ford added 11 points and eight rebounds for the WNBA squad, which is coached by Michael Cooper.
For Olympic, Allison Feaster had 16 points and six rebounds, Audrey Sauret scored 15 points, hitting three 3-pointers, and Ann Wauters finished with 13 points and 16 rebounds.
Olympic led 57-52 entering the fourth quarter. With 35 seconds left, Ruth Riely made two free throws and Ferdinand stole the ball to seal the victory.
“They made a successful job in the last seconds. They were sharp,” Cooper said.
In the second semifinal, Maria Stepanova had 15 points and 12 rebounds for Samara. Sheryl Swoops had 20 points and five rebounds while Natalie Williams added 11 points and 8 rebounds for UMMC, which featured four WNBA players.
On Sunday, UMMC, which defeated the WNBA team 68-54 on Thursday, will play Olympic for third place.