North Texas' Tony Mitchell tallied nine points and four rebounds to go with the game's lone block. He was 4-of-4 from the floor for a US (5-1) squad that shot 47.3 percent for the game.
For the second consecutive game Jeremy Lamb (Connecticut) scored a game best, accounting for 25 points. Patric Young (Florida) made 7-of-7 shots and finished with 15 points and eight rebounds, while Joe Jackson (Memphis) added 14 points and was the only other U.S. play to score in double figures.
While the loss didn't affect the USA's number one seed for Group F, the win by Croatia did shake up the standings below and caused a three-way tie for second. Utilizing the FIBA tie breaking formula, Croatia earned Group F's number two seed, Lithuania is number three and Serbia is number four.
Following a day off Thursday, the medal round quarterfinals will be played Friday in Riga, Latvia, as the top four teams from the two second round groups earning the right to advance. While the USA's quarterfinals opponent remains to be determined, the seeding means a matchup between the two gold medal favorites, the USA and Lithuania, could occur in the semifinals if both teams win their quarterfinals game.
"Congratulations to Croatia, they played, very, very well. They did a great job of spreading us out on the offensive end; they made our defense have to scramble and they shot the ball very, very well. They played with more purpose than we did and deserved to win," said USA mentor Paul Hewitt (George Mason). "We did have a chance at the end, but we didn't do some of the things we needed to, especially defensively, to hold on to the win.