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Spain tops Poland, moves into World Cup semis

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By the Associated Press

Ricky Rubio scored 19 points, including a pair of 3-pointers in a game-deciding 11-0 run in the final minutes, and Spain advanced to the World Cup semifinals by topping Poland 90-78 on Tuesday night.

Willy Hernangómez scored 18 points, Rudy Fernandez added 16 and Rubio had a game-high nine assists for Spain (6-0), which had been beaten in the quarterfinal round of the last two World Cups — by France in 2014, and by Serbia in 2010 when the tournament was still called the world championship.

Adam Waczynski of Poland tries to pass through Juancho Hernangomez of Spain during their quarterfinals match for the FIBA Basketball World Cup at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Shanghai, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

Adam Waczynski of Poland tries to pass through Juancho Hernangomez of Spain during their quarterfinals match for the FIBA Basketball World Cup at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center in Shanghai, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019. (AP Photo/Andy Wong)

But Spain broke through this time and will face either Australia or the Czech Republic in the semifinals at Beijing on Friday.

A.J. Slaughter scored 19 points and Adam Waczynski finished with 15 for Poland (4-2), which is assured of finishing no worse than eighth at its first appearance at the World Cup since 1967.

Poland got within 76-72 on a layup by Waczynski with 5:42 remaining, but Spain pulled away over the next three minutes. Hernangómez’s three-point play got Spain’s run started, Rubio then made his 3s about 90 seconds apart and Marc Gasol found Victor Claver for a dunk with 2:41 left that made it 87-72.

 

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