2014 USA 3x3 U18 National Championship Preliminary Round Wraps Up
Colorado Springs, Colorado
The 2014 USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Championship Tournaments tipped off on Saturday morning at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and at the end of the day’s preliminary round play one men’s team and one women’s team remained undefeated as the competition heads into the final round of play Sunday.
The women’s winner of this weekend’s championship will be named as the 2014 USA Basketball 3x3 Youth Olympic Games Team and will earn the right to represent the United States at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games from Aug. 16-28 in Nanjing, China.
“I think we played well today,” said Kipper Nichols (Lakewood, Ohio) of Legit, who helped lead his squad to a 5-0 record today. “We are improving and have been focusing on playing hard the whole game. Now, we have to keep it consistent, play as a team and fight until the very end tomorrow.”
The men’s tournament continues on Sunday, June 1, with the quarterfinals round that pit 5-0 and Pool A No. 1 seed Legit versus Pool B No. 4 seed Diamond State Stars (2-2), and Pool B No. 1 seed Washington (3-1) will go against Pool A No. 4 seed Kings (2-3) at 9:20 a.m. (all times are local, mountains daylight time). Pool B No. 2 seed Chaos (2-2) will face Pool A No. 3 seed G-Unit (3-2), and Pool A No. 2 seed Arizona Warriors (4-1) will meet Pool B No. 3 seed Blazer (2-2) at 9:40 a.m. The quarterfinal winners will advance to the semifinals that will be played at 10:40 a.m., followed by the championship game at 11:20 a.m.
“Our first game was kind of rough,” said De’Janea Boykin (Springdale, Md.) of Defend, after her team battled it out with Southern Stars and earned a 21-20 decision. “We did better during the rest of the evening and for tomorrow, we just have to keep playing together and keep winning.”
In the women’s tournament, Sunday will bring playoffs that will see four teams compete for a chance to earn the trip to China and represent the United States at the Youth Olympic Games. No. 1 seed and 5-0 Defend will take on No. 4 seed Grind Repeat (0-4) at 10:20 a.m., while No. 2 seed Southern Stars (3-2) will face No. 3 seed Elite Force (2-3) also at 10:20 a.m.
The basketball competition at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games is a 3x3 format organized by the International Olympic Committee and FIBA. The 2014 Youth Olympic Games is expected to include 20 men’s teams and 20 women’s teams, as well as a dunk contest for men and a shootout for women. Each team will be comprised of four players, and athletes eligible for this competition must have been born between Jan. 1, 1996 and Dec. 31, 1997.
Twenty teams are expected to participate. China is qualified as the host country; as are the top three finishing teams from the 2013 FIBA 3x3 U18 World Championship for women: USA (gold), Estonia (silver) and Spain (bronze) and for men: Argentina (gold), France (silver) and Russia (bronze); and the top three finishing teams from the 2013 FIBA 3x3 World Tour for women: Slovenia (gold), Serbia (silver) and Venezuela (bronze) and men: Slovenia (gold), Serbia (silver) and Venezuela (bronze). Thirteen additional nations will qualify based on their respective national federation 3x3 ranking.
2010 was the inaugural Youth Olympic Games and the event is scheduled to be held every four years (2014, 2018, etc.). The 2010 USA women's team, which featured Briyona Canty, Andraya Carter, Amber Henson andKiah Stokes, finished with a 6-1 record and in possession of the bronze medal after being edged by Australia 25-23 in the semifinals. The 2010 USA men's team, which featured K.C. Caudill, Angelo Chol, Sterling Gibbsand Brandan Kearney, finished with a 5-2 record and in fourth place after falling to Greece 34-25 in the bronze medal game.
Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball, chaired by Jerry Colangelo, is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men’s and women’s basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA-sponsored international competitions, as well as for some national competitions, and for the development of youth basketball initiatives that address player development, coach education and safety.
During the 2009-12 quadrennium, 1,273 male and female players and 235 coaches participated in USA Basketball, including USA Basketball teams and trials, and USA Basketball 3x3 FIBA championships.
USA Basketball men’s and women’s teams between 2009-12 compiled an impressive 262-35 win-loss record in FIBA and FIBA Americas competitions, the Pan American Games, the World University Games, the Nike Hoop Summit and in exhibition games.
USA teams are the current men’s and women’s champions in the Olympics; men’s and women’s FIBA World Championships (Basketball World Cup); men’s and women’s FIBA U19 and U17 World Championships; men’s and women’s U18 and U16 FIBA Americas Championships; Nike Hoop Summit; the FIBA 3x3 Women’s World Championship; and the FIBA 3x3 Women’s U18 World Championship. USA Basketball currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA’s world-ranking categories, including combined, men’s, women’s, boys and girls.
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