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Sports >  Gonzaga basketball

Gonzaga’s Rui Hachimura, former Zag Ira Brown spark Japan’s World Cup win

UPDATED: Thu., Sept. 13, 2018

Few Good Men forward Ira Brown soars for a dunk over Team Utah center Akolda Manyang in The Basketball Tournament in June at Lewis and Clark High School. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)
Few Good Men forward Ira Brown soars for a dunk over Team Utah center Akolda Manyang in The Basketball Tournament in June at Lewis and Clark High School. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Gonzaga junior forward Rui Hachimura and former Bulldogs wing Ira Brown helped Japan cruise to an 85-70 victory over Kazakhstan in the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers.

Hachimura scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed seven rebounds. Brown added nine points and eight boards in Japan’s win Thursday at the Baluan Sholak Sports Palace in Kazakhstan.

Japan took control early, building a 49-34 halftime lead and stretching it to 20 at the end of three quarters.

Hachimura missed both of his 3-point attempts but made 8 of 12 shots inside the arc and 8 of 9 at the free-throw line. He added three steals and one block in a team-high 34 minutes.

Brown hit 2 of 3 3-pointers and 3 of 5 field-goal attempts overall. He had two steals and his 18 minutes led all bench players. Brown, who went through a two-year process to obtain Japanese citizenship, has played professionally in Japan since 2011.

Japan, which faces Iran on Monday, has won three straight World Cup games.

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