USA Basketball Names 2009 Women's U16 National Team
May 31, 2009 - Colorado Springs, Colo.
Following three days of trials featuring 34 athletes at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball today announced the inaugural 2009 USA Basketball Women's U16 National Team roster, which will represent the USA in the 2009 FIBA Americas U16 Championship for Women (site and date TBD). The player selections were made by the 2009-12 USA Basketball Women's Developmental National Team Committee. To be eligible for the team, players must be a U.S. citizen born on or after Jan. 1, 1993.
Named to the 2009 USA U16 National Team roster were: Jordan Adams (Mater Dei H.S. / Irvine, Calif.); Cierra Burdick (Butler H.S. / Mathews, N.C.); Justine Hartman (Brea Olinda H.S. / Brea, Calif.); Betnijah Laney (Smyrna H.S. / Clayton, Del.); Ariel Massengale (Bolingbrook H.S. / Bolingbrook, Ill.); Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (Mater Dei H.S. / Anaheim, Calif.); Alexia Standish (Colleyville Heritage H.S. / Colleyville, Texas); Breanna Stewart (Cicero-North Syracuse H.S. / North Syracuse, N.Y.); Kiah Stokes (Linn Mar H.S. / Marion, Iowa); Morgan Tuck (Bolingbrook H.S. / Bolingbrook, Ill.); Alexyz Vaioletama (Mater Dei H.S. / Fountain Valley, Calif.); and Elizabeth Williams (Princess Anne H.S. / Virginia Beach, Va.).
'I think the committee did a wonderful job,' said Barbara Nelson, USA and Wingate University head coach. 'We have 12 exceptional young ladies. Wonderful, very smart, very high basketball IQ, and I think that will allow us to do some great things.
'I see a lot of really interchangeable parts with this roster, which will be really helpful in the offenses we plan to run. We need to establish who our shooters are because I think that is going to be key for us, and from here on out, we need to understand the transition of the game better and not just waiting to set up a play.
'I am so excited to start practice. I am tired of watching them scrimmage, and I am ready to run some drills and teach some skills and hopefully take their basketball knowledge to a different level.'
The 2009 USA Women's U16 National Team will remain in Colorado Springs through the morning of June 4 for training. Due to a left knee injury Tuck suffered during trials, Bashaara Graves (Clarksville H.S. / Clarksville, Tenn.) will practice with team through June 4. All 34 trials participants are members of the 2009-10 USA Basketball Women's Developmental National Team and are considered alternates.
The USA squad will practice Sunday, May 31, at 3:00 p.m. On June 1, 2 and 3, the team will practice at 9:00-11:00 a.m. and 5:00-7:00 p.m. daily. The squad will hold a final session at 9:00-11:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 4 before the team members return home.
The 2009 USA U16 National Team will again reassemble prior to the start of the inaugural FIBA Americas U16 Championship (date and site TBD). The tournament will feature eight U16 national teams from North, South and Central America and the Caribbean, with the top three finishing teams qualifying for the 2010 FIBA U17 World Championship, which will be played July 16-25 in Toulouse and Rodez, France.
Nelson will lead her first USA squad, with the assistance of Mike Armstrong of Perry Meridian High School (Ind.) and Dorena Bingham of Team Alaska AAU.
The USA Basketball Women's Developmental National Team Committee is chaired by Carol Callan (Women's National Team Director, USA Basketball) in a non-voting position. The committee also includes: NFHS members Jill Meerman (Decatur Central High School, Ind.) and Sue Phillips (Archbishop Mitty High School, Calif.); AAU appointees Jody Patrick (Vogues AAU, Va.) and Brian Robinson (Stealers AAU, N.C.); and athlete representative Jamie Carey (head coach, Legacy High School, Colo.), a member of the 2003 USA Pan American Games Team.
The roster features nine athletes who are members of the class of 2011 and three players who recently completed their freshman campaigns and will graduate with the class of 2012.
Led by California with four athletes and Illinois with two players, Delaware, Iowa, New York, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia also boast representatives on the roster.
Two high schools feature teammates on the roster. Adams, Mosqueda-Lewis and Vaioletama play together at Mater Dei High School in California; and Massengale and Tuck are teammates at Bolingbrook High School in Illinois.
Six players helped their high school teams finish the 2008-09 season ranked among USA Today's Super 25 index. Hartman helped Brea Olinda to a No. 3 ranking and a 33-2 record; Massengale and Tuck were members of No. 5 Bolingbrook that finished 25-4; and Adams, Mosqueda-Lewis and Vaioletama were key contributors to No. 6 ranked and 32-1 Mater Dei.
Despite being high school freshmen and sophomores in 2008-09, several athletes received national recognition on lists that included juniors and seniors as well.
USA Today listed Tuck on its All-USA second team and Mosqueda-Lewis on the All-USA third team.
Parade Magazine honored Mosqueda-Lewis as an All-America first team selection and named Tuck to its third team.
ESPNRISE.com named Mosqueda-Lewis its National Sophomore of the Year and Tuck its National Freshman of the Year and listed both players on its All-America first team; while Laney and Massengale were second team members.
MaxPreps Xcellent All-America first team listed Mosqueda-Lewis, who also was named the 2009 Gatorade California State Player of the Year.
Four players helped three schools to state titles. Hartman led Brea Olinda to a California Division II state title; Tuck and Massengale led Bolingbrook to the Illinois 4A state title; and Williams helped Princess Anne to a Virginia 3A title.