University of Kentucky basketball signee Jamal Murray came up big late for Canada, finishing with 22 points and six assists in a 111-108 overtime victory Friday against the United States in Pan American Games semifinals in Toronto.
Canada will play for the gold medal on Saturday against Brazil, which defeated the Dominican Republic 68-62 in the other semifinal.
Murray didn't score in the first three quarters against the U.S., but he started to take control of the game with 14 points in the fourth. He hit a three-pointer with 36 seconds left in regulation that tied the game at 97-all. He missed a floater at the buzzer that could have won the game in regulation.
The 18-year-old provided a pair of assists early in overtime that sent the Canadians to a 102-97 lead. But the U.S. rallied to go ahead 106-104.
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Murray, however, provided back-to-back three-pointers to give Canada the lead for good. He also grabbed the rebound on the Americans' attempt at a game-tying three at the end of overtime.
"For someone his age to do what he did shows how good he is and why we wanted him in the worst way," UK Coach John Calipari tweeted shortly after the game ended.
"It means everything to be out here," Murray said after the game on ESPN2, according to UK Athletics. "Playing on the two highest stages (for Canada and Kentucky) at this age is just incredible. To have my great teammates and amazing NBA coaches beside me along the way is a learning experience for me."
Murray finished 8-for-18 from the field, including 4-for-8 from three-point range. He also had four rebounds to go with two turnovers.
"There was a moment there, I think it was early in the fourth, where I thought maybe we should go back to Junior (Cadougan, the starting point guard) ... defensively he's always in the right place, and Jamal has his moments where he's 18," former NBA star Steve Nash, the GM for Team Canada, told the Toronto Star. "From there on he was just incredible, and it just shows he's ... he's not afraid of the moment. He embraces the moment and that's why he's very, very special."
The Orlando Magic's Andrew Nicholson scored a game-high 31 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for Canada. The Minnesota Timberwolves' Anthony Bennett added 18 points and 14 rebounds.
Bobby Brown led Team USA with 25 points.
Former UK player Kyle Wiltjer, a senior-to-be at Gonzaga, did not play for the Canadians.