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Russia 94, China 78

July 29, 1996

ATLANTA (AP) _ Yelena Baranova scored 26 points and grabbed 18 rebounds Monday as Russia finished preliminary pool play in women’s basketball with a 94-78 victory over China.

Russia (4-1) lost only to Brazil in pool play and will be a strong contender for a medal. The medal round quarterfinals are Wednesday.

China (1-4), the silver medalist at the 1994 world championships, beat only Canada in its preliminary pool.

Yevgeniya Nikonova added 16 points and Svetlana Kouznetsova 15 for Russia, which pulled away after leading just 44-43 at halftime.

Nikonova scored the final five points of a 9-2 run that erased China’s only lead of the second half and put the Russians ahead 53-47. China never threatened after that as the Russian players continually drove past their defenders for easy baskets.

China’s 6-foot-8 Zheng Haixia had a second straight mediocre game, finishing with 11 points and four rebounds. She had only three points and two rebounds in the previous game, a 98-83 loss to Brazil. Zheng was voted the outstanding player at the last world championships.

Zheng Dongmei and Ma Zongqing led China with 14 points each.

Update hourly