San Antonio Spurs’ Tiago Splitter and Team Brazil got off to a good start on the opening day of the 2011 FIBA Americas Championship in Mar del Plata, Argentina.
It was a close first half, as Venezuela took a 26-25 lead after the first quarter and extended their advantage over Brazil 44-39 at the break.
But Brazil kept fighting throughout the game winning the third quarter 27-25 to cut the deficit to 69-66 entering the final period.
In the final canto, the Brazilian national team relied on a balanced offensive attack to outscore Venezuela 26-14 in the pivotal period.
Venezuela were within striking distance after a three-point basket 81-80.
However, on the ensuing possession, Marcelo Machado answered back with 3-pointer of his own to put the lead back 84-80, as the Brazilians pulled away for a 92-83 victory.
Splitter had a great all-around game and led the Brazilian nationals with 17 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and two block shots while shooting 87.5 percent from the field in 31 minutes of action.
Marcelo Huertas and Guilherme Giovannoni had 16 points apiece, while Alex Garcia added 15 for Team Brazil.
Venezuela leaned heavily on Memphis Grizzlies guard Greivis Vasquez on offense, who finished with a game-high 26 points in a losing effort.
Splitter and Team Brazil will play against Cory Joseph and Canada on Wednesday at 20:30 (GMT -3) in Mar del Plata.