- Associated Press - Saturday, September 10, 2011

MAR DEL PLATA, ARGENTINA (AP) - Brazil beat the Dominican Republic 83-76 on Saturday to claim a berth in next year’s London Olympics.

Marcelo Machado led Brazil with 20 points in the semifinal victory, which puts the South Americans into the final of the Olympic basketball qualifying tournament for the Americas on Sunday.

Argentina and Puerto Rico met in the second semifinal later Saturday.

The two finalists qualify automatically for London. The third through fifth-place teams earn spots in a qualifying tournament just before the games, which will award several more berths for London. Venezuela claimed the fifth-place spot.

Brazil’s Marceo Huerta added 19 points in a game that was close throughout. Al Horford of the Atlanta Hawks and Jack Martinez each scored 18 for the Dominican Republic.