FIBA world championships

Quinn Cook, Justin Anderson lead the U.S. at the FIBA Under-17 World Basketball Championships

"We have a chip on our shoulder because we feel we have something to prove," says Quinn Cook (4) about a matchup against Australia.
"We have a chip on our shoulder because we feel we have something to prove," says Quinn Cook (4) about a matchup against Australia. (Hanns-peter L├╝tzig/special To The Post)

Network News

X Profile
View More Activity
By David Hein
Friday, July 9, 2010

HAMBURG -- Having drunk Germans spill beer on them was not the reception Quinn Cook and Justin Anderson expected at the FIBA Under-17 World Basketball Championship.

But those Germans were just ecstatic soccer fans as Cook and Anderson were watching Germany's World Cup quarterfinal victory over Argentina -- a chance to see some local culture during the inaugural world basketball tournament.

"It was crazy, you have a drunk guy in front of you and behind you everywhere you walked. They're throwing beer, they're throwing water. When they scored, oh my God, it felt like a war going on," said Anderson, a rising junior at Montrose Christian, of the atmosphere in downtown Hamburg during Germany's soccer win on July 3.

"We had our USA gear on and the people were very respectful. But they are proud of their country too, saying 'Germany! Germany!' when you walk by. But they'd give you high-fives."

The excursion was one of the main off-court highlights for Team USA, which provided plenty of highlight reel action on the court in easily taking first place in Group A round-robin play with a 5-0 record. Coach Don Showalter's team won by an average of 38.6 points and will take on Australia in Friday's quarterfinals in Hamburg.

A showdown with China or Canada in Saturday's semifinals would follow before Sunday's gold medal game.

If the group stage is any indication of things to come, then Cook and Anderson will likely be coming home to the D.C. area on Monday with gold medals around their necks.

"We're very focused. We have a chip on our shoulder because we feel we have something to prove," said Cook, the All-Met Player of the Year, who this past winter led DeMatha to the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championship and City Title as a junior.

"It would be an honor. It's not a city thing. It's not a national championship. It's the world championship. That's what we're striving for. And we won't accept anything less."

Both Cook and Anderson came to Germany after having won continental gold last summer for the U.S. at the FIBA Americas Under-16 tournament in Argentina.

Just like Mendoza, Argentina, the northern German port city Hamburg has provided another bout of culture shock for both players.

"You definitely value what you have back home. It's been difficult trying new foods, experimenting with new things, being away from your family. So it's definitely an eye-opener," said Cook, 17, a Bowie native.


CONTINUED     1        >

© 2010 The Washington Post Company

Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity