Even Australia’s B team have shown they will be a force to be reckoned with at the Tokyo Olympics after Chris Goulding inspired the understaffed Boomers to a landslide 108-69 victory over Nigeria in Las Vegas. .
Just a day after stunning USA 91-83, Australia rested stars Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Aron Baynes and Matthew Dellavedova against Nigeria in Wednesday’s pre-Olympic exhibition match.
Although they missed almost their entire starting squad, the Boomers came out on fire and led 49-26 by the end of the second quarter before heading for victory.
Australia were unstoppable at long range, scoring 18 of 29 in a remarkable shooting display.
Goulding was the hottest hand of the lot, draining his seven long path bombing attempts by 21 points in 22 minutes of court time.
He already had six three-pointers under his belt in three quarters, but spent several minutes on the bench in the final quarter and only managed one more shot for the game.
“I’m going to be honest, professionally, if I shoot seven in a row I probably shoot another 10,” Goulding told ESPN.
“It’s a little different here internationally.
“We have a good system. I’ve been playing it for quite a few years now. I’m pretty confident about where I can find my shots.”
Baby boomer center Duop Reath (17 points), Nathan Sobey (15), Jock Landale (14), Josh Giddey (14) and Josh Green (11) all shared the scoring loads.
Nigeria, who beat the United States last week before beating World No.4 Argentina 94-71 on Tuesday, struggled to launch their attack.
Josh Okogie (10 points) and Obi Emegano (10 points) were the only two players to hit double digits, with Nigeria only touching eight of 31 from the perimeter.
The baby boomers are yet to win an Olympic medal, but confidence is growing that they can go all the way in Tokyo after taking victories against Argentina, the United States and Nigeria.
“A lot of baby boomer teams have come together (before),” Goulding said of the prospect of a medal.
“There are so many guys who have been in this program for 15 years.
“So having the pain of tournaments where it hasn’t worked out – we’re focused, we’ve got one goal and that’s to win a gold medal.”
Australia opens Olympic campaign against Nigeria; with Italy and Germany also in their group.
The Boomers will be back in action on Saturday when they face the United States in a highly anticipated rematch.
Gregg Popovich’s side broke a rare two-game losing streak on Wednesday with a 108-80 victory over Argentina.