Daniel Theis (R) of Germany vies for the ball during the group G match between Germany and Dominican Republic at the FIBA World Cup 2019 in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong Province, Sept. 3, 2019. (Xinhua/Xu Chang)
SHENZHEN, China, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- Germany failed to recover from a disappointing opening loss against France at the 2019 FIBA World Cup, losing 70-68 to the Dominican Republic in their second group match here on Tuesday.
Dennis Schroder finished with 20 points and seven assists. Daniel Theis added 12 points and grabbed eight rebounds, but it wasn't enough for the Germans to avoid defeat.
The Dominican Republic's Victor Liz and Eloy Vargas hit a combined 33 points to see their side qualify for the last 16 after two wins in as many games.
"Our coach gave us a lot of confidence. Germany is very strong offensively. They played physically and moved the ball quickly, so we had to remain patient," Liz said after the game.
The Dominican Republic took an early 10-2 lead, before Germany fought back to lead 21-16 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter turned out to be a real nail-biter, as the Dominican Republic's Gelvis Solano gave five assists to lead his side to fight back, but the Germans maintained a 39-37 lead before the second half thanks to Schroder's six consecutive points.
"Schroder was unstoppable," acknowledged Dominican Republic coach Nestor Garcia. "We are proud we could compete in any situation. We wanted to stop the shooters because they have big guys. We tried to close down the shooters and not give them any chances."
Germany then lost their attacking rhythm, scoring only 13 points during the third quarter, while Solano contributed several steals and assists to help his team rattle off eight straight points before the quarter's end, with the Dominican Republic 55-52 ahead.
The final quarter belonged to Dominican Republic's frontcourt players, as Vargas and Eulis Baez laid on 11 points to seal a hard-fought win.
"I am very happy for my players," added Garcia. "These guys fought well today. Maybe for a lot of people our success is a surprise, but we believe in ourselves. Our team can do more in this World Cup."