USA Basketball Announces Court Coaches for Women's National Team Trials
--USA Basketball Announces Court Coaches for Women's National Team Trials--
Colorado Springs, Colo. - May 7, 2009
Russ Davis of Vanguard University (Calif.) and Sharon Thompson of East Mississippi Community College have been selected to serve as court coaches during the 2009 USA Basketball Women's National Team Trials, USA Basketball today announced. The trials will be held May 14-17 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. As court coaches, Davis and Thompson will work with the approximately 60 athletes who will be vying for spots on the 2009 USA U19 World Championship and USA World University Games squads.
-I am honored to participate again with USA Basketball," Davis said. -It is great to be a part of such a great organization and to get to work with the best women's college basketball players in the country."
-It is an incredible honor and privilege to be invited to work with such a prestigious organization as USA Basketball," Thompson said. -I see this as a great learning experience and an opportunity to better myself as a young coach. Working with USA Basketball will be an experience that I will never forget."
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 championship will take place July 23-August 2 in Bangkok, Thailand. Included in the field of nations are: Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, France, Japan, Lithuania, Mali, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, Tunisia and the USA.
University of Northern Illinois head coach Carol Owens was named head coach of the 2009 U19 World Championship team, while Amanda Butler of the University of Florida and Bill Fennelly of Iowa State University will serve as assistant coaches.
The World University Games is a multi-sport competition organized by the International University Sports Federation and held every other year. The 2009 women's basketball competition will take place July 1-12 in Belgrade, Serbia. Participants must be between 17 and 24 years old and either a current college student or have attended a college or university within the past year.
Tabbed as head coach of the 2009 World University Games Team was Arizona State University's Charli Turner Thorne, with Suzy Merchant of Michigan State University and Julie Rousseau of Pepperdine University joining her as assistant coaches.
This will mark Davis' second coaching assignment with USA Basketball, as he previously was a court coach for the 2005 Women's Junior National Team Trials. Davis is coming off a 31-4 season with Vanguard that included his sixth Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) championship in the past seven seasons and a trip to the NAIA quarterfinals. Vanguard also won the GSAC postseason tournament and Davis was named GSAC Coach of the Year and the NAIA National Coach of the Year.
In 2007-08 Davis had his best year yet, reaching his fourth NAIA Final Four and winning the 2008 NAIA national championship. Vanguard finished the season 29-5, finished second in the GSAC regular season and tournament, and Davis was named the 2008 NAIA Phyllis Holmes Coach of the Year.
In his 13 years (1996-97 to present) as head coach at Vanguard, Davis has compiled a 349-86 overall record (.802 winning percentage) and won nine GSAC titles. He has been named GSAC Coach of the Year six times, was the Russell Athletic/Women's Basketball Coaching Association (WBCA) NAIA Coach of the Year in 2005, and the Russell Athletic/WBCA West Region Coach of the Year in 2006. He was also named the 2007 NAIA National Coach of Character.
After serving as an assistant men's basketball coach at Woodbridge High School (Calif.) from 1982-83 through 1990-91, Davis was named head coach of Woodbridge's women's team in 1991. In his first year as head coach, Davis earned the California Interscholastic Federation State Division II and Orange County Register Coach of the Year honors. Davis moved onto Estancia High School (Calif.), where he remained until he joined Vanguard as an assistant coach in 1995-96.
Davis serves as First Vice President for the NAIA on the WBCA Board of Directors and is a member of the NAIA Women's Basketball National Tournament Committee. He is also on the Kodak Women's Basketball All-America Committee.
Thompson is entering her first selection as a USA Basketball trials coach after completing her fourth season (2004-05 to present) with East Mississippi Community College (EMCC), where she guided her team to a 25-7 record and a NJCAA Region 23 Tournament championship. Thompson was honored as the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges (MACJC) Women's Basketball Coach of the Year as EMCC made the field of the 16 regional champions that comprise the NJCAA Division I Women's Basketball Tournament for the first time since 1978.
Prior to being named head coach, Thompson completed a four-year stint (2000-01 through 2003-04) as assistant coach at EMCC. She was promoted to her current position in 2004.
Thompson graduated from Mississippi State, where she was a four-year starter (1994-95 to 1997-98) for the Lady Bulldogs. Thompson capped her MSU career as an All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) first team recipient in 1997-98, and in 2005 was selected into the SEC Greats Program for her playing contributions at Mississippi State.
The Geiger, Ala., native went on to play professionally in the American Basketball League and the Italian Basketball League. Thompson earned her master's degree in physical education from the University of West Alabama in 2003.
FIBA U19 World Championship for Women History
Originally known as the FIBA Junior World Championship, the tournament was held every four years from 1985 " 2005. FIBA recently changed its calendar and will now hold age-based world championships every other year. USA women's teams are 41-10 in the U19/Junior World Championships, capturing gold with a 9-0 record at the most recent U19 Worlds, held in Slovakia in 2007.
USA U19 World Championship for Women Players of note include: Angela Aycock, Alana Beard, Essence Carson, Tamika Catchings, Monique Currie, Crystal Langhorne, Erlana Larkins, Lisa Leslie, Rebecca Lobo, Maya Moore, Vickie Orr, Courtney Paris, Cappie Pondexter, Katie Smith, Dawn Staley, Ann Strother, Diana Taurasi, Abby Waner and Candice Wiggins.
USA World University Games History
USA Basketball has participated in a total of 14 World University Games and collected a record six golds, six silvers and one bronze medal. Since 1973, the first year the USA competed in the WUGs, the United States has compiled an 82-15 record in World University Games play. In 2005, the last year USA Basketball sent a team to the WUGs, the USA posted a 7-0 slate en route to the gold medal.