2010 USA Basketball Women's U18 National Team Trials Roster Features 26 Top Prep Athletes
Counting 17 All-Americans and 12 of the top 20 senior prospects, 26 elite high school athletes have accepted invitations to participate in the 2010 USA Basketball Women's U18 National Team Trials, June 8-11 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball today announced.
The 26 players will battle for one of 12 roster spots on the 2010 USA Basketball Women's U18 National Team that will compete in the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women June 23-27 at the USOTC in Colorado Springs. Players eligible for this competition must be a U.S. citizen born on or after Jan. 1, 1992.
Included in the field of 26 set for trials are 14 McDonald's All-Americans, eight USA Today All-Americans, 15 Parade Magazine All-Americans and seven Gatorade State Players of the Year.
-I'm obviously excited to be working with these kids," said Jennifer Rizzotti, USA U18 and University of Hartford head coach. -You can see that they're all the best of the best. Our goal is to find a group that will come together and help represent the United States in the tournament, and I'm looking forward to finding out who that's going to be."
The 2010 graduates on the trials roster are Stefanie Dolson (Minisink Valley H.S./Port Jervis, N.Y.); Karla Gilbert (A&M Consolidated H.S./College Station, Texas); Cassie Harberts (San Clemente H.S./San Clemente, Calif.); Bria Hartley (North Babylon H.S./North Babylon, N.Y.); Kaneisha Horn (Ramsay H.S./Birmingham, Ala.); Richa Jackson (Midwest City H.S./Midwest City, Okla.); Sara James (Oak Ridge H.S./El Dorado Hills, Calif.); Afure Jemerigbe (St. Mary's H.S./Stockton, Calif.); Kayla McBride (Villa Maria Academy/Erie, Pa.); Shanece McKinney (LeFlore H.S./Mobile, Ala.); Laurin Mincy (University H.S./Newark, N.J.); Chiney Ogwumike (Cy-Fair H.S./Cypress, Texas); Haley Peters (The Peddie School/Red Bank, N.J.); Theresa Plaisance (Vandebilt Catholic H.S./Marrero, La.); Lindsay Sherbert (Great Oak H.S./Temecula, Calif.); Meighan Simmons (Steele H.S./Cibolo, Texas); Alyssa Thomas (Central Dauphin H.S./Harrisburg, Pa.); and Samarie Walker (Chaminade-Julienne H.S./West Carrollton, Ohio).
The Class of 2011 members on the trials roster are Brittany Boyd (Berkeley H.S./Berkeley, Calif.); Raven Ferguson (Africentric Early College H.S./Columbus, Ohio); Reshanda Gray (Washington Prep H.S./Los Angeles, Calif.); Morgan Jones (Lake Mary H.S./Altamonte Springs, Fla.); Allyson Malott (Madison H.S./Middletown, Ohio); Amber Orrange (Westbury Christian H.S./Houston, Texas); Erica Payne (Carondelet H.S./Danville, Calif.); and Cassie Peoples (Cy-Fair H.S./Cypress, Texas).
-The committee is certainly excited to have this talented group of players from which to select our 2010 USA U18 Women's National Team," said Sue Donohoe, chair of the USA Basketball Women's Junior National Team Committee. -We have 26 talented athletes and depth at every position. It will be a competitive trials, and the USA will be well represented at the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women."
All sessions will be held at the training center's Sports Center I. The first session will take place June 8 at 6:30 p.m. (MDT); followed by sessions on June 9 from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. and 6:00-8:00 p.m.; and June 10 from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. and 5:30-7:30 p.m. The 12-player 2010 USA Women's U18 National Team will be announced on the morning of June 11 and will remain in Colorado Springs for training through the start of the FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women on June 23.
Rizzotti, an assistant coach for the gold medal-winning 2006 USA Women's U18 National Team, will be assisted by Florida State University head coach Sue Semrau and University of Central Florida head coach Joi Williams, both of whom are first-time USA coaches.
Selection of the USA U18 National Team will be made by the USA Basketball Women's Junior National Team Committee. In addition to Donohoe, the committee includes Joanne Boyle (University of California head coach), Coquese Washington (Penn State University head coach), Connie Yori (University of Nebraska head coach), and athlete representative Beth Cunningham (1999 USA Pan American Games Team member).
Of the 26 athletes set for trials, only Ogwumike and Walker have previous USA Basketball experience. A year ago, at 16 years old, Walker was the youngest player to participate in the trials for the USA U19 Women's World Championship Team, which eventually won a gold medal " its third straight " in the FIBA U19 World Championship last summer in Bangkok, Thailand. Meanwhile, Ogwumike, who both Gatorade and USA Today named as their 2010 National Player of the Year, took part in trials for the 2008 USA U18 National Team, which won that year's FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Fourteen of the 18 players set to graduate this spring played in the 2010 McDonald's All-American game in March, including Dolson, Gilbert, Hartley, Horn, Jackson, Jemerigbe, McBride, Mincy, Ogwumike, Peters, Plaisance, Sherbert, Simmons and Walker. Coming off the bench, no less, Simmons scored a game-high 21 points in only 14 minutes, leading the West team to an 84-75 win over the East. While Simmons was named the team MVP, Gilbert (15), Ogwumike (14) and Jackson (12) all scored in double figures for the West.
Eleven players " Harberts, Hartley, Jackson, Simmons, Walker, Gilbert, Horn, Jemerigbe, James, Ogwumike and Sherbert " also played in the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All-America Game in April. Ogwumike led all scorers with 24 points, but Simmons scored 21 of her own to lead the Red team to a 101-81 win over Ogwumike's White.
Additionally, Parade recognized Hartley, Jackson, Ogwumike and Thomas as All-America first team members; Gilbert, Horn, James, Jemerigbe, McBride, Peters and Walker as second team members; Harberts and Sherbert as members of third team; and Dolson and Simmons as members of the fourth team.
USA Today also named Horn and Ogwumike to its All-USA first team; Hartley, Jemerigbe and Simmons to the second team; and Dolson, Thomas and Walker to the third team.
While Ogwumike was named both the Gatorade National and Texas State Player of the Year, Hartley (New York), Horn (Alabama), Jackson (Oklahoma), McBride (Pennsylvania), Peters (New Jersey) and Plaisance (Louisiana) also earned Gatorade Player of the Year honors in their respective states.
Overall, the 26 players on the trials roster represent 10 different states, and seven of the athletes are from California. Five players are from Texas, and three more from Ohio, while Alabama, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania each claim two. Florida, Louisiana and Oklahoma have one player each.
The trials roster also features a pair of accomplished teammates, Ogwumike and Peoples, who together led Cy-Fair to a Class 5A Texas state championship and a No. 6 national ranking by USA Today.