Court Coaches Announced For 2011 USA Basketball Women's U19 World Championship And World University Games Team Trials
May 5, 2011 • Colorado Springs, Colo.
Kenya Larkin-Landers of Trinity Valley Community College (Texas) and Mark Youngs of Davenport University (Mich.) today were announced as court coaches for the 2011 USA Basketball Women’s U19 World Championship and World University Games Team Trials. The coaching selections were made by the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee.
“I am so excited to assist as a trials court coach,” Larkin-Landers said. “Working with USA Basketball is an honor, and I truly feel blessed to be a part of it. To represent your country in any capacity is a privilege.”
“I am absolutely thrilled and honored to be chosen to be a part of the USA Basketball family,” Youngs said. “I have an immense respect for the coaches I am going to be coaching with, and I have followed the progress of our national teams very closely over the past decade. I am really looking forward to the upcoming experience.”
Trials for both the 2011 USA Women’s U19 World Championship Team and the 2011 USA Women’s World University Games Team will take place in staggered sessions May 22-25 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.
While approximately 35 players are expected to attend each trials, current collegiate athletes participating in the U19 trials are eligible and may also be considered for the 2011 USA World University Games Team.
At the 2011 FIBA U19 World Championship for Women, which will be played July 21-31 in Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas, Chile, the USA will be led by the University of Hartford’s Jennifer Rizzotti and assistant coaches Sue Semrau of Florida State University and Joi Williams of the University of Central Florida. Only U.S. citizens who are 19 years old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 1992) are eligible for the 2011 USA U19 World Championship Team.
Iowa State University’s Bill Fennelly has been tabbed head coach of the 2011 USA World University Games Team. Suzie McConnell-Serio of Duquesne University and Terri Williams-Flournoy of Georgetown University have been selected to serve as assistant coaches. The trio will look to defend the USA’s 2009 gold medal at the 2011 World University Games women’s basketball competition August 14-21 in Shenzhen, China. The World University Games are a multi-sport competition, and the U.S. team will be comprised of athletes who are currently enrolled in college and have remaining eligibility.
In addition to chair Sue Donohoe (NCAA vice president for Division I women’s basketball), the USA Women’s Junior National Team Committee includes NCAA appointees Joanne Boyle (University of Virginia), Coquese Washington (Penn State University) and Connie Yori (University of Nebraska), as well as athlete representative Beth Cunningham (Virginia Commonwealth University, 1999 USA Pan American Games Team member).
Larkin-Landers recently completed her first season as co-head coach at Trinity Valley C.C., a position she shares with her husband, Michael Landers. After the pair led the Cardinals to a 34-3 record, a NJCAA Region XIV championship and the NJCAA Tournament national championship game in 2010-11, Larkin-Landers also shared with her husband the 2011 Region XIV Coach of the Year award.
“I hope this will be an avenue for me to become involved with USA basketball in the future,” Larkin-Landers said. “The coaches that work with USA Basketball are first class, and to be among my peers is going to be a fantastic experience.
“I believe my experience on various levels as a player and coach will be a positive asset during trials,” Larkin-Landers continued. “I am ready to motivate and help teach the game, and I’m looking forward to communicating with the coaches and players on and off the floor. I am so excited to see the future of women’s basketball and to see those players competing for an opportunity to represent our country.”
While Larkin-Landers entered her first head coaching position in 2010-11, she owns an all-time record of 121-65 (.651 winning percentage) in six seasons as an assistant coach.
Prior to returning to her alma mater of Trinity Valley, Larkin-Landers spent two seasons (2008-09 and 2009-10) as an assistant at Louisiana State University. She helped the Tigers to a 40-21 record during her time at LSU, including the NCAA Tournament second round in 2009 and 2010.
Larkin-Landers also spent three seasons (2005-06 through 2007-08) at Oklahoma State University, where she assisted the program to a 53-41 record, an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2007 and the Sweet Sixteen in 2008.
Additionally, Larkin-Landers was an assistant coach under her husband at Trinity Valley C.C. in 2004-05, when the Lady Cardinals finished 28-3 and captured the NJCAA Region XIV Conference championship.
Larkin-Landers played basketball for two years at Trinity Valley under coach Kurt Budke. She helped her team to the school's first unbeaten season (36-0) and a NJCAA national championship title as a freshman point guard in 1998-99. In her two years at the college, the Cardinals were 60-6. Larkin-Landers earned all-region and all-conference honors as a sophomore in 1999-00, before moving on to the University of Texas.
At Texas, she played in all 65 of the Longhorns' games in her two seasons in Austin (2000-01 and 2001-02). Starting in all but three games in her career, she led the team in assists in both seasons. As a senior in 2001-02, she helped Texas reach the NCAA Sweet Sixteen. She finished her career at Texas with 443 points, 195 assists and 97 steals.
Larkin-Landers played professionally overseas for two seasons in 2003 and 2004, twice leading her Israeli professional team to the playoffs. She was third in the league in scoring in 2003 and was named the league's Point Guard of the Year. She also was an all-league selection both years.
Larkin-Landers earned her bachelor's degree in education from the University of Texas in 2002.
In nine seasons (2002-03 to present) as the head coach at Davenport University, Youngs has compiled a 238-62 overall record (.793 winning percentage) and reached seven National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II national championship tournaments, including the title game in 2011, the Elite Eight in 2009 and the Sweet Sixteen in 2008 and 2010.
“I hope to bring a unique energy and passion to the staff and to the players,” Youngs said. “Everyone involved in USA Basketball – the administration, the coaches and the players – are first class. I cannot wait to work with coaches that know what these coaches know and players that can do what these players can do. The success of USA Basketball, especially on the women's side, is unmatched in any sport, at any level. I am excited for the opportunity to contribute whatever I can to help this level of success continue.”
Most recently, Youngs led his team to a program record 37 wins as the Panthers suffered their only loss in the 2011 NAIA national championship game to finish the season with a 37-1 mark.
Having led the Panthers to their first Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) Tournament title in 2005-06, Youngs and Davenport have captured the past five WHAC regular season titles and the last two conference tournament championships.
In 2009-10, Davenport became the first team in the WHAC to be ranked No. 1 in the NAIA Division II coaches poll, and the Panthers were in the top five nationally all season.
Young’s first trip to the national tournament came in 2005, following a 21-13 record in his third season.
He has been honored as the 2006, 2010 and 2011 WHAC Coach of the Year, the Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan’s Women’s Coach of the Year in 2010 and the Russell Athletic Midwest Region Coach of the Year in 2009.
Recognized as the WBCA National Grade point Average Champions with a team GPA of 3.613 in 2006, his teams also listed fifth nationally in 2007 and sixth in 2008.
Youngs is a 1999 graduate of Hope College (Mich.). As a prep athlete in Michigan, he quarterbacked Belding Highs School’s football team to the 1994 Class B state championship.
He was the boys basketball coach at his alma mater, leading Belding to a 26-25 record in two seasons, and he coached AAU boys basketball while a student at Hope College.
Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball 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 United States 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 basketball competitions, as well as for some national competitions.
Since 2008, USA Basketball men’s and women’s teams have compiled a sterling 96-2 win-loss record in FIBA or FIBA Americas competitions. USA teams are the current men’s and women’s champions in the Olympics, FIBA World Championships; U19 and U17 FIBA World Championships; and U18 and U16 FIBA Americas championships. 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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