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Canada’s women’s basketball team returned to action with a dominant win Saturday, trouncing the U.S. Virgin Islands 101-41 at the AmeriCup tournament in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Shaina Pellington of Pickering, Ont., led the Canadians in scoring with 16 points and Milton, Ont., product Kayla Alexander contributed 10 rebounds.

Canada had a commanding 27-7 lead at the end of the first quarter and never trailed.

The Group A game marked the first time the Canadians have played together since February 2020 when the squad clinched a spot at the Tokyo Olympics in Belgium.

WATCH | Canada rolls past Virgin Islands in AmeriCup opener:

Canada poured in 15 triples as they beat the Virgin Islands 101-41 in their opening game of the FIBA women’s AmeriCup. 1:11

Canada, ranked No. 4 in the world, faces Brazil on Sunday, El Salvador on Monday and Colombia on Tuesday.

Coach Lisa Thomaidis said after Saturday’s game that her team is a “work in progress” and will be a much different team at the end of the tournament.

“It was a great start for us. We’re really emphasizing getting great shots and ball movement, and I thought we had a good start doing that today,” she said.

The top two teams from each group advance to the semifinals. The final is June 19.

The top four teams advance to World Cup qualifying tournaments, Feb. 6-14, 2021. The top three from each qualifier earn a berth in the World Cup, in Sydney, Australia, Sept. 22-Oct. 1, 2022.

WATCH | North Courts panel on Olympic expectations for Canadian women:

Vivek Jacob, Jevohn Shepherd, and Meghan McPeak discuss the WNBA’s #WearOrange initiative, Kia Nurse’s emergence with the Phoenix Mercury, and Team Canada’s lofty expectations heading into the Olympics. 13:07


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