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Canadian women grab 2 wins on opening day of final Olympic 3x3 basketball qualifier

Canada began play with mixed results at a last-chance Olympic 3x3 basketball qualification tournament in Debrecen, Hungary on Thursday.

The top-ranked women opened with victories over Chile (21-11) and Lithuania (19-16) while the world No. 15 men split their games, defeating Spain (18-14) but losing to Egypt (21-18).

The top three finishers in the respective 16-team events will round out the eight-team field in Paris. Host France, Australia, Azerbaijan, China and United States previously qualified on the women's side.

Two weeks ago, the Canadians were one win away from securing a spot at a Japan qualifier but fell in the final of that tourney to Australia.

The top two teams from each pool will advance to the quarterfinals in Hungary. Those four quarterfinal winners will meet in the semifinals, with each semifinal winner and the third-place finisher qualifying for Paris this summer.

Canada's women occupy top spot in Pool B and will face the Czech Republic in their final group match on Saturday at 11:05 a.m. ET.

The Canadians grabbed momentum from ninth-ranked Lithuania when Michelle Plouffe snapped a 14-14 tie with a two-point shot.

The standard three-point line serves as the two-point line in 3-on-3, while baskets made from inside the arc are worth one.

With 82 seconds left in the match, Lithuania's Kamile Nacickaite was assessed a technical foul after she slapped the ball on the court while disputing a foul call.

WATCH | Full match replay — Canada vs. Lithuania:

Canada, the two-time defending Women's Series champions, subsequently extended its lead to 18-14 on free throws by Paige Crozon and Kacie Bosch.

Lithuania cut the deficit to 18-16 but ran out of time when Nacickaite was called for a shot clock violation and

Read more on cbc.ca