After absorbing a blowout defeat against Team USA, France bounced back big time as they scored a 71-64 victory over much-favored Argentina to take their first win in men’s basketball competition of the 2012 London Olympics.
Tony Parker led France’s balance attack, finishing with 17 points and five assists, while Nicolas Batum added 14 points and seven rebounds to go with three assists.
Michael Gelabale had 13 points and six rebounds, Nando De Colo added 11 points, while Kevin Seraphin added 10 points and six rebounds for France, who came out with a lot of energy right from the opening tip.
The French squad came out firing in the opening period as Batum erupted for eight points to give France a 19-10 lead at the end of the first quarter, before Argentina outplayed them in second period to trim the lead down to three points, 32-29, at the half.
The third period was a see-saw battle as they traded leads. France entered the final period with a two-point lead and they managed to hold off rallies from Argentina as Parker tallied eight points in the quarter to shut the door for the Argentineans.
Manu Ginobili had a brilliant night, racking up 26 points and five rebounds, while Luis Scola added 16 points and eight rebounds for Argentina, who have not lost to France in five games in an Olympic and World Basketball Championship competition before the game.
With France’s victory, the two teams are now tied with 1-1 record along with Lithuania and Nigeria in Group A.