2014 USA 3x3 National Championship
Colorado Springs, Colo.
May 9-11
2014 USA 3x3 National Championship
Colorado Springs, Colo.
May 9-11

Additional Quotes >> USA 61, France 28

Klaipeda, Lithuania • July 28, 2013

Katie Meier

Katie Meier, USA head coach (University of Miami)

• Listen to more of what Katie Meier had to say about winning a gold medal.

What was the key to tonight’s win?
Obviously we had to grind it out on the offensive end. At halftime we talked about our defense. They had only scored 20 points and that was huge for us. So, we just said that when push comes to shove, you win championships with your defense, so go out there and lock down and stay together as a team. That was just an amazing performance.

On Breanna Stewart’s MVP performance:
She’s such a special player and just when you think she’s tapped out, she’s getting better. Even throughout this tournament, she faced a lot of different defenses and a lot of different strategies. She’s patient and she hunts her shots when we need her. She rose to the occasion and that’s kind of her M.O.

Wow, it’s a joy. She is joyful. She is just so fun to coach.

Before the game when we were in the hotel lobby, I said, ‘I just want you to know, I came to win.’ And she’s like ‘I got you coach.’ It was like, ‘wow.’ The kid’s got all that pressure on her and she told me she got me. She’s a champion.

Nikki Caldwell

Nikki Caldwell, USA assistant coach (Louisiana State University)

• Listen to what Nikki Caldwell had to say about winning a gold medal.

Kelly Graves

Kelly Graves, USA assistant coach (Gonzaga University)

• Listen to what Kelly Graves had to say about winning a gold medal.

Candice Agee

Candice Agee (Penn State / Victorville, Calif.)

• Listen to what Candice Agee had to say about winning a gold medal.

Nia Coffey

Nia Coffey (Hopkins H.S./*Northwestern/Minneapolis, Minn.)

• Listen to what Nia Coffey had to say about winning a gold medal.

How did it feel to have that gold medal hung around your neck?
It definitely felt amazing. Honestly, I can’t even put to words what I felt, but it was truly a blessing to be a part of this team. To play together to win the gold is actually a dream come true.

You were very quiet when you arrived at training camp and now you seem to be at ease with being here. How much of a journey has it been for you?
Definitely I was really quiet, but the girls were so nice and friendly that they welcomed me with open arms. I got to know them really well. I started talking more, but I absolutely love the girls. It’s absolutely amazing to be on the same team with them.

How much have you learned about yourself and your game over the last month?
I learned that there’s always room for improvement. I learned different ways to work with other people, play with people in a short period of time, and the chemistry and stuff like that. I learned a lot overall.

What did you think of the coaching staff?
They were absolutely amazing. They were so supportive. They had us prepared for every game. They did a really great job of encouraging us and helping us get to the gold. They were great.

How much will this process help you as you head to college in the fall?
I feel like I’m going to have a leg up. I’ve played with some of the best athletes in the world, so I have that. And then just the work ethic that’s involved that’s involved with basketball in college, I’ll be ready for college now.

On Breanna Stewart’s MVP performance:
She did it all. She was our leader. She played defense. She did offense. She did everything. She’s such a great teammate, along with the whole team, but she was really great so it was fun to be a part of her team.

Bashaara Graves

Bashaara Graves (Tennessee/Clarksville, Tenn.)

• Listen to what Bashaara Graves had to say about winning a gold medal.

Gabby Green

Gabby Green (St. Mary’s College H.S./Oakland, Calif.)

• Listen to what Gabby Green had to say about winning a gold medal.

Linnae Harper

Linnae Harper (Whitney Young H.S./*Kentucky/Chicago, Ill.)

• Listen to what Linnae Harper had to say about winning a gold medal.

How did it feel to win the gold medal?
It felt really good. Seeing the time go down, it was 10 seconds left, I was really excited, all the jitters were there and I was just happy to be able to the gold.

On Breanna Stewart’s MVP award:
She deserved it. She led us throughout the whole tournament. When we needed her, she was there. She’s a good team player and a leader. She deserved it.

What was the key to the win tonight?
I think it was just being focused. We played them twice and they were good games. But if we just focused on the things we needed to do and play team ball, work together and have good chemistry, I thought we’d do good.

How much will this help you heading into Kentucky next season?
It’s going to really help me with my confidence and also with my game. Being around college players and playing with them, I kind of know a little bit about college ball. Playing for coach Meier, she’s a college coach, so that really helped me a lot. I think I’ll be ready for Kentucky.

Listen to hear more of what Harper had to say!

Kelly Graves

Moriah Jefferson (Connecticut/Glenn Heights, Texas)

• Listen to what Moriah Jefferson had to say about winning a gold medal.

Alexis Jones

Alexis Jones (Duke/Irving, Texas)

• Listen to what Alexis Jones had to say about winning a gold medal.

Kelsey Plum

Kelsey Plum (La Jolla Country Day/*Washington/Poway, Calif.)

• Listen to what Kelsey Plum had to say about winning a gold medal.

Breanna Stewart

Breanna Stewart (Connecticut/North Syracuse, N.Y.)

• Listen to what Breanna Stewart had to say about winning a gold medal.

How different was this world championship gold from the other golds you’ve won with USA Basketball?
It was different because I had a different role. Usually I’m not one of the older players and coming into it I was looked at as a veteran because I’ve been in these situations before I’ve had to play well and try to lead my team at the same time.

What was the key to the victory?
Definitely defense. You could see that they scored 20 points in the first half and then only eight in the second. I think that we really wanted to make a third quarter run and we did that, starting with our defense, which led to transition offense.

Were you a little surprised to hear your named called as the MVP?
Yeah. I was just having fun this tournament. I was really looking forward to it. Shots were falling, which is always really nice, but the gold is the most important thing.

On becoming the USA’s all-time leading U19 World Championship scoring leader:
I think that’s news to me. Coach Meier said it after the game. But, it’s just points. You could score points and still lose the game. I’m just happy that we won the game.

Do you think your leadership role on this team is going to help you next season at Connecticut?
I definitely think it is going to help me. At UConn I was obviously an underclassman, but being really able to try to create more of a leadership role for myself, I think that will only help me at UConn.

What did you learn from this coaching staff?
From this coaching staff I learned a lot. It’s a great group of coaches from top D1 schools. I was very excited to be able to play under them. They’re on the same level that I am and I think they helped me create more of a leadership role and helped me play well.

Morgan Tuck

Morgan Tuck (Connecticut/Bolingbrook, Ill.)

• Listen to what Morgan Tuck had to say about winning a gold medal.

What was the key to tonight’s victory?
I definitely think it was defense. In the second we only gave up eight points. We really focused on defending them and not letting them score. If they can’t score, they can’t win.

How does it feel to win an NCAA championship in the same year as your second U19 World Championship gold medal?
It feels great. To come out here and do it twice and with a totally different team, I think it just accounts to what USA Basketball is all about, winning gold medals.

On Breanna Stewart’s performance:
She did really well. When she was open, taking her shots and taking good shots at that. I feel like she really came out, played her game, didn’t worry about anything else and just showed what Breanna Stewart can do.

Brianna Turner

Brianna Turner (Manvel H.S. /#Notre Dame/Pearland, Texas)

• Listen to what Brianna Turner had to say about winning a gold medal.

A'ja Wilson

A’ja Wilson (Heathwood Hall H.S/Hopkins, S.C.)

• Listen to what A'ja Wilson had to say about winning a gold medal.

 

*Has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend and compete for school indicated.
#Has verbally committed to attend and compete for school indicated.