3x3WC: Love from fans fuels Italy's gold medal run
Paul Lintag on Jun 12, 2018 10:45 PM
With no more Philippine team seeing action in the final day Tuesday at the Philippine Arena, fans needed to find a team to root for. Italy was that team.
BOCAUE, Bulacan --- Maybe fans indentified with Rae Lin D'Alie or whatever, but fans at the Philippine Arena here absolutely embraced Italy's women's 3x3 team.
At the front of course was D'Alie, Italy's 5'4" star oozing with talent and charisma, but the 8th-seeded Italians certainly had something in their whole team that fans just seemed to love.
And the newly-crowned FIBA 3x3 World Cup champions certainly felt that love.
"Oh yeah," the Italians said in unison when asked if the crowd’s cheering helped them in their dream run to the gold medal.
"We loved it. We love the Philippines," they said.
With no more Philippine team seeing action in the final day Tuesday at the Philippine Arena here, fans needed to find a team to root for.
Italy was that team.
According to D'Alie, who was named tournament MVP, they started to feel the energy of the crowd more after they won the quarterfinals against the favored Americans.
That she said, was the time they realized they can actually win the whole thing with the crowd backing them up.
"I think for me it was in the quarterfinal. I think we already had the support of the home court before that. But I think we really believed we could do it. And then after that quartefinal, we were like, everybody hold on, cause we’re just gonna take energy and we’re just gonna go," she said.
"For me personally, that’s—after that game, I was just, 'wow, I think we could really do it,'" D'Alie added.
Getting tremendous support since Day 1, the champs just had to say thanks to all their supporters.
"Thank you, thank you for coming out, for driving out here, thank you for filling the stadium Monday night, Tuesday night, you guys are probably working all day, you guys probably have stuff to do, and you decided to come out to support 3x3," D'Alie said.
"We wanna say thank you. And I think if you just love people and just spread light, it’s gonna come back and I saw that a lot, the staff at the hotel and here at the arena, and it’s just like energy, you feed off on another," Rae added.
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