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News | Dec. 15, 2014

U.S. Armed Forces Men capture international basketball title

By Armed Forces Sports Office Armed Forces Sports Office

The U.S. Armed Forces Men's Basketball team defeated Lithuania, the reigning champs, 89-82 to win the 2014 SHAPE International Basketball Championship Dec. 6.

Air Force Capt. Matt Holland of Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., was named Most Valuable Player of the six-day tournament that featured teams from Italy, Kuwait, Latvia, France, Canada, United Kingdom and Belgium.

Team USA went undefeated throughout the tournament to capture the gold for the first time since 2010. Lithuania was positioned to win their third straight title, but the U.S. took off to an early lead in the championship game and held strong to steal the title.

First held in 1960, the annual SHAPE International Basketball Tournament is NATO's largest sports competition, attracting numerous NATO and Partners For Peace nations from around the globe.

Gen. Philip Breedlove, the Supreme Allied Commander-Europe, was in attendance during the finals to give closing remarks and present the awards.

The U.S. Armed Forces Men's Basketball team will next compete at the 6th Conseil International du Sport Militaire World Military Games, Oct. 2-11, 2015, in South Korea.

Final Standings: 1st -- USA; 2nd -- Lithuania; 3rd -- Italy; 4th -- Kuwait; 5th -- Latvia; 6th -- France; 7th -- Canada; 8th -- United Kingdom; 9th -- Belgium

U.S. Armed Forces Basketball Roster:
Senior Airman Lortavius Smith -- Air Force (Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii) -- Guard
Staff Sgt. Corey -- Rucker -- Air Force (Warren Air Force Base, Wyo.) -- Guard
2nd lt. Michael Fitzgerald -- Air Force (Hurlburt Field, Fla.) -- Forward
Airman 1st Class Kyle Duncan -- Air Force (Kadena Air Base, Japan) -- Forward
1st Lt. Evan Washington -- Air Force (Hill Air Force Base, Utah) -- Guard
Capt. Matt Holland -- Air Force (Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass.) -- Forward
Petty Officer 2nd Class Alfonso Evans -- Navy (Naval Air Base, Little Creek, Va.) -- Forward
Petty Officer 2nd Class Johnny Fuller -- Navy (Norfolk Naval Base, Va.) -- Guard
Senior Airman Jahmal Lawson -- Air Force (Aviano Air Base, Italy) -- Forward
2nd lt. David Burns -- Air Force (Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.) -- Center
2nd lt. Mike Lyons -- Air Force (Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.) -- Guard

Mr. Dwayne Reed -- Air Force (Lackland AFB, Texas) -- Coach
Mr. Steve Brown -- Air Force ( Lackland AFB, Texas) -- Chief Of Mission