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1997 USA Basketball Women's International Invitational Team

  • Date:
    Jun 10, 2010

Colorado Springs, Colorado • September 5-10, 1997


The United States Women's Senior National Team, winners in three of four games at the double round-robin 1997 USA Basketball Women's International Invitational Tournament, claimed first place honors despite falling 65-63 to Australia in the Tournament's final game. Although the USA and Australia finished with identical 3-1 records in the International Invitational Tournament, the U.S. squad collected top honors based on the point differential in the teams' two meetings. Suffering a down-to-the-wire 65-63 loss to Australia in the teams' second meeting on Sept. 10, the U.S. had recorded a 16 point, 94-78 win in their first clash on Sept. 7. The professional club team SCP Ruzomberok of Slovakia finished the tournament 0-4 and in third place.

Selected to the five-member 1997 USA Basketball Women's International Invitational All-Toumament Team were the USA's Tina Thompson and Kara Wolters, Michelle Griffiths and Rachael Sporn of Australia, and Natalia Svisceva of SCP Ruzomberok.

Wolters led the USA offense averaging a tournament best 17.0 ppg., while adding 5.5 rpg. and shooting 67.5 percent (27-40 FGs) from the floor. Thompson averaged 9.5 ppg. and a team high 7.0 rpg., Crystal Robinson averaged 8.3 ppg., while Ruthie Bolton and Tonya Edwards each averaged 7.0 ppg. The 12 members of the USA national squad were selected following USA Basketball's September 1-4 Women's Senior National Team Trials.

In the final game of the six-day tournament, Australia's Griffiths drove the lane and drained a layup with :26 to play, putting her Aussie team ahead 65-63. The USA had two shots at the basket as time expired, but failed to convert as Australia picked up the win. The game featured seven ties and 14 lead changes, and neither team led by more than seven points as the U.S. led 36-33 at halftime. Wolters led all scorers with 14 points, Thompson gathered a game high eight rebounds and scored 11 points, and Bolton, a 1996 Olympian, finished with 12 points and six assists.

In the first USA-Australia meeting on Sept. 7, the U.S., behind 35 points and 18 rebounds from post players Wolters (23 points, 8 rebounds) and Thompson (12 points, 10 rebounds), claimed a 94-78 victory. The teams exchanged leads twice early in the game, before the USA claimed the lead for good, 19-17, on a pair of Katie Smith free throws with 10:21 to go in the opening half Finishing the half on a 10-4 run that was highlighted by six points from Sheri Sam, the USA led 50-40 at halftime. In the second half, the U.S. opened a 17-point lead and sailed to the 94-78 win. In the win, the United States shot a sizzling 60.7 percent (37-61 FGs) from the field, limited Australia to ust 38.6 percent (27-70) field goal shooting, and enjoyed a 48-34 rebounding advantage. Robinson aided the USA's victorious cause with 15 points and five assists.

The U.S. squad posted a pair of wins against SCP Ruzomberok, winning 56-50 in the first meeting and 72-63 in the second. On Sept. 6, after spotting Ruzomberok a six-point lead with 18:17 to play, the U.S. battled back to earn a 56-50 victory. Wolters was the only U.S. player to score in double figures, finishing with 16 points, while also registering four rebounds and three steals. Meeting again on Sept. 9, after sharing leads six times, the U.S. used a 15-3 run in the middle of the second half to claim a 72-63 win. Edwards, who scored five straight points to ignite the USA's 15-3 run, came off the bench to score 15 points, including 13 in the second half Wolters also tallied 15 points for the U.S., while Thompson finished with 10 points.

Australia also posted a pair of victories over Ruzomberok, recording a 68-67 win after scoring at the buzzer in game one, and a less suspenseful 72-50 win on Sept. 8.

1997 USA BASKETBALL WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL INVITATIONAL TEAM ROSTER

NAME
HGT
WGT
AGE
PRO TEAM COLLEGE HOMETOWN
Debbie Black
5-3
120
31
Colorado Xplosion St. Joseph's '88 Aurora, CO
Ruthie Bolton
5-8
150
30
Sacramento Monarchs Aubum'89 McClain, MS
Edna Campbell
5-8
140
28
Colorado Xplosion Texas'91 Pittsburgh, PA
Tonya Edwards
5-10
160
29
Columbus Quest Tennessee'90 Flint, NU
Venus Lacey
6-4
190
30
Long Beach StingRays Louisiana Tech '90 Ruston, LA
DeLisha Milton
6-1
170
22
Portland Power Florida '97 Riceboro, GA
Crystal Robinson
5-11
155
23
Colorado Xplosion SE Oklahoma St. '96 Aurora, CO
Sheri Sam
6-1
175
22
San Jose Lasers Vanderbilt'96 Duson, LA
Charlotte Smith
6-0
155
24
San Jose Lasers North Carolina '95 Shelby, NC
Katie Smith
5-11
173
22
Columbus Quest Ohio State '96 Logan, OH
Tina Thompson
6-3
185
22
Houston Comets USC '97 Los Angeles, CA
Kara Wolters
6-7
210
22
New England Blizzard Connecticut '97 Holliston, MA
Head Coach: Nell Fortner, USA Basketball
Assistant Coach: Jim Lewis, George Mason University (VA)
Assistant Coach: Deb Patterson, Kansas State University
Team Physician: James Robinson, University of Alabama
Athletic Trainer: Ed Ryan, USOC Sports Medicine

 

 

1997 USA BASKETBALL WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL INVITATIONAL RESULTS

Final Standings
1. *United States 3-1
2. *Australia 3-1
3. SCP Ruzomberok 0-4


* Final standings determined by point differential between tied teams

Friday, September 5
Australia 68, SCP Ruzomberok 67
Saturday, September 6
USA 56, SCP Ruzomberok 50
Sunday, September 7
USA 94, Australia 78
Monday, September 8
Australia 72, SCP Ruzomberok 50
Tuesday, September 9
*Australia 8 1, Colorado Xplosion 74
USA 72, SCP Ruzomberok 63
Wednesday, September 10
Australia 65, USA 63
*Colorado Xplosion 74, SCP Ruzomberok 70

NOTE: *Exhibition game, results did not count in the tournament standings

 

 

1997 USA BASKETBALL WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL INVITATIONAL TEAM CUMULATIVE STATISTICS

NAME
G/S
FGM-A
PCT
3PM-A
PCT
FTM-A
PCT
REB
PTS
AS
BK
ST
Wolters
4/4
27-40
.675
0-0
.000
14-17
.824
22/ 5.5
68/ 17.0
5
6
4
Thompson
4/2
12-26
.462
0-4
.000
14-16
.875
28/ 7.0
38/ 9.5
4
0
4
Robinson
4/2
13-29
.448
1-7
.143
6-6
1.000
10/ 2.5
33/ 8.3
11
1
4
Bolton
4/1
10-23
.435
2-7
.286
6-6
1.000
15/ 3.9
28/ 7.0
14
0
5
Edwards
4/2
10-23
.435
3-7
.429
5-6
.833
10/ 2.5
28/ 7.0
5
0
3
Sam
4/2
9-21
.429
1-2
.500
1-1
1.000
14/ 3.5
20/ 5.0
4
0
4
C. Smith
4/2
6-12
.500
0-0
.000
3-7
.429
6/ 1.5
15/ 3.8
2
0
1
K. Smith
4/1
4-12
.333
0-2
.000
6-8
.750
5/ 1.3
14/ 3.5
7
0
0
D. Black
4/2
5-12
.417
0-2
.000
3-4
.750
11/ 2.8
13/ 3.3
12
0
7
Campbell
4/1
5-9
.556
1-2
.500
2-4
.500
5/ 1.3
13/ 3.3
3
1
2
Milton
4/1
5-11
.455
1-1
1.000
0-0
.000
5/ 1.3
11/ 2.8
0
3
5
Lacey
4/0
2-5
.400
0-0
.000
0-0
.000
8/ 2.0
4/ 1.0
1
2
0
USA
4
108-223
.484
9-34
.265
60-75
.800
157/ 39.3
285/ 71.3
68
13
39
OPP.
4
90-236
.381
7-37
.189
69-93
.742
136/ 34.0
256/ 64.0
44
9
35

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