2009 USA Basketball Women's U19 National Team Finalized
July 7, 2009 - Colorado Springs, Colo.
|Kelly Faris returns after helping the U.S. advance to the 2009 World Championship by claiming gold at the 2008 FIBA Americas U18 Championship. (Photo: Steven Maikoski / USA Basketball)|
Featuring five athletes who helped the U.S. secure its berth to the 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship, USA Basketball today announced the 12-member 2009 USA U19 World Championship Team. As the two-time defending U19 World Championship gold medalists, the USA will attempt to make it three straight golds at the '09 U19 Worlds, scheduled for July 23-Aug. 2 in Bangkok, Thailand.
The USA Women's U19 Team will train at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.,
July 9-16 before departing for Bangkok.
Named to the 2009 USA U19 World Championship Team are returning USA Basketball gold medalists Kelsey Bone (Dulles H.S. /Stafford, Texas); Skylar Diggins (Washington H.S. / South Bend, Ind.); Kelly Faris (Heritage Christian H.S. / Plainfield, Ind.); Nnemkadi Ogwumike (Stanford / Cypress, Texas) and Samantha Prahalis (Ohio State / Dix Hills, N.Y.), who helped the U.S. advance to the '09 U19 Worlds by claiming gold at the 2008 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.
Also selected for the '09 USA U19 Team were: LaSondra Barrett (Louisiana State / Jackson, Miss.); Layshia Clarendon (Cajon H.S. / San Bernadino, Calif.); Shenise Johnson (Miami, Fla. / Henrietta, N.Y.); C'eira Ricketts (Arkansas / Louisville, Ky.); Chay Shegog (North Carolina / Stafford, Va.); Taber Spani (Metro Academy / Lee's Summit, Mo.); and Destiny Williams (Benton Harbor H.S. / Benton Harbor, Mich.).
Sarah Boothe (Stanford / Gurnee, Ill.) and Shawnice Wilson (Pittsburgh / Pittsburgh, Pa.), who were named as finalists for the USA U19 squad on May 17, were both forced to withdraw due to injuries.
-I think this team offers multiple offensive weapons and has a lot of versatility," said Carol Owens, USA and Northern Illinois University head coach. -They are a great group of young ladies that will represent our country with class. I am extremely excited. I am really looking forward to seeing the staff and the team and get going. We have a special group and I am can't wait to work with them. Overall I would like to have an intense and productive training camp. Three things I would like to accomplish are: build team chemistry, establish our offensive and defensive philosophy and prepare the team for the level of competition we will be facing in Bangkok."
The U.S. will tip-off training camp on July 9 at 5:00 p.m. (all times MDT). The team will train twice a day, beginning at 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on July 10 and 11. The team has one practice scheduled for July 12, at 10:00 a.m., before resuming two-a-days at 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. from July 13-16. The U.S. will train July 18-22 in Thailand prior to the July 23 start of the 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship.
The 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship features 16 national teams comprised of athletes 19-years-old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 1990) that qualified through their FIBA zone tournaments.
The 16 teams have been drawn into four preliminary round pools of four teams each, and the USA has been placed into Group D with China, Mali and Spain. Group A features Argentina, Australia, France and South Korea; Group B includes Brazil, Czech Republic, Lithuania and Thailand; while Group C includes Canada, Japan, Russia and Tunisia.
The U.S. is slated to open preliminary round play against Spain on July 23, followed by China on July 24 and Mali on July 25. The top three finishing teams in each preliminary round group will advance to the July 27-29 second round, the quarterfinals will be played on July 31, semifinal action is scheduled for Aug. 1 and the gold medal will be contested on Aug. 2.
Owens is being assisted by collegiate head coaches Amanda Butler of the University of Florida and Bill Fennelly of Iowa State University.
The team was selected by the USA Basketball Junior National Team Committee, chaired by NCAA representative Sue Donohoe (Vice President for Division I Women's Basketball). In addition to Donohoe, the committee includes NCAA appointees Joanne Boyle (head coach, University of California), Coquese Washington (head coach, Penn State University) and Connie Yori (head coach, University of Nebraska); and athlete representative Beth Cunningham (head coach, Virginia Commonwealth University), a member of the 1999 USA Pan American Games Team.
FIBA U19 World Championship
Originally known as the FIBA Junior World Championship, the tournament was held every four years starting in 1985. FIBA changed its calendar and, as of 2005, the U19 World Championship is now conducted every other year. USA women's teams are 41-10 in the U19/Junior World Championships and have won a record three gold medals and one bronze medal. The U.S. captured gold most recently with a 9-0 record in 2007.
After coming up short in the medal count in the first three FIBA U19 World Championships, the U.S. has been on the podium in each of the last four competitions, winning gold in 1997, bronze in 2001 and gold in 2005 and 2007, compiling a 29-2 slate during that run.
Some notable athletes who have competed on past USA U19/Junior World Championship Teams are: Angela Aycock (1993); Alana Beard (2001); Essence Carson (2005); Tamika Catchings (1997); Monique Currie (2001); Crystal Langhorne (2005); Erlana Larkins (2005); Lisa Leslie (1989); Rebecca Lobo (1993); Maya Moore (2007); Vickie Orr (1985); Courtney Paris (2005); Cappie Pondexter (2001); Katie Smith (1993); Dawn Staley (1989); Ann Strother (2001); Diana Taurasi (2001); Abby Waner (2005) and Candice Wiggins (2005).