2017-18 USA Basketball Women's National Team
Sept. 30, 2017 – Sept. 17, 2018 • California; Connecticut; South Carolina; Washington; Washington, D.C.; France
The University of South Carolina’s Dawn Staley was named head coach of the 2017-20 USA Basketball Women’s National Team on March 10, 2017, and from there, a total of 39 athletes took part in at least one of four training camps between September 2017 and the tip-off of the 2018 FIBA World Cup in September 2018.
Twenty athletes took part in the first training camp, held Sept. 30-Oct. 2 in Santa Barbara, California. It took place during the WNBA Finals and therefore several invited athletes were unable to attend.
The training camp roster featured WNBA stars Sue Bird, Layshia Clarendon, Elena Delle Donne, Skylar Diggins-Smith, Stefanie Dolson, Brittney Griner, Tiffany Hayes, Jewell Loyd, Kayla McBride, Kelsey Plum, Breanna Stewart, Kiah Stokes, Diana Taurasi, Morgan Tuck, and Courtney Williams.
Then-collegiate athletes who took part in the camp included: Napheesa Collier (Connecticut); Asia Durr (Louisville); Kelsey Mitchell (Ohio State); Katie Lou Samuelson (Connecticut) and A’ja Wilson (South Carolina).
The three-day camp also featured four collegiate head coaches serving as court coaches: Michelle Clark-Heard (Western Kentucky), Jennifer Rizzotti (George Washington), who eventually was named as an assistant coach for the 2018 USA World Cup Team, Sue Semrau (Florida State) and Jeff Walz (Louisville).
On Dec. 14, 2017, the first 29 members of the 2017-20 USA National Team were officially unveiled and included Seimone Augustus, Bird, Tina Charles, Clarendon, Collier, Delle Donne, Diggins-Smith, Dolson, Durr, Sylvia Fowles, Griner, Hayes, Jantel Lavender, Loyd, Angel McCoughtry, Kelsey Mitchell, Maya Moore, Chiney Ogwumike, Nneka Ogwumike, Plum, Samuelson, Odyssey Sims, Stewart, Taurasi, Tuck, Lindsay Whalen, Courtney Williams and Wilson.
The U.S. held a three-day minicamp at the University of South Carolina from Feb. 9-11, which featured 16 members of the 2017-20 USA National Team Pool as well as six additional athletes who took part in hopes of being named to the pool. USA National Team members at the February minicamp were Bird, Charles, Clarendon, Delle Donne, Diggins-Smith, Dolson, Griner, Hayes, Loyd, McCoughtry, Moore, Nneka Ogwumike, Plum, Taurasi, Tuck and Courtney Williams. Attending the camp as USA National Team hopefuls were Allisha Gray, Chelsea Gray, Tiffany Mitchell, Brittney Sykes, Sydney Wiese and Elizabeth Williams.
Assisting Staley as court coaches for the February camp were WNBA head coaches Brian Agler (Los Angeles Sparks), Dan Hughes (Seattle Storm) and Cheryl Reeve (Minnesota Lynx).
Whalen, who donned her first USA Basketball uniform in 2002 and claimed a total of six gold medals while helping USA Basketball teams compile a 66-3 overall record, including exhibition play, officially retired from USA Basketball on Feb. 2 and withdrew from the USA National Team pool.
In April, members of the team came together for its third training camp – a two-day minicamp from April 24-25 followed by an exhibition contest against China on April 26 at Key Arena in Seattle. Attending the camp were Augustus, Bird, Clarendon, Collier, Delle Donne, Diggins-Smith, Dolson, Fowles, Allisha Gray, Hayes, Loyd, Kelsey Mitchell, Tiffany Mitchell, Stewart, Sykes, Taurasi, Tuck, Wiese and Elizabeth Williams. Hughes, Reeve and Rizzotti, who were named as 2018 USA World Cup Team assistant coaches on March 14, 2018, served as assistant coaches during the USA’s three days in Seattle.
Following the first two days of camp, the roster was pared down for the USA versus China exhibition contest. Competing in the game were Augustus, Bird, Clarendon, Diggins-Smith, Dolson, Fowles, Hayes, Loyd, Kelsey Mitchell, Stewart, Taurasi and Elizabeth Williams. Tuck was added to the game roster after Delle Donne, who was originally slated to play, suffered a neck sprain and was unable to compete.
The USA received 16 points from Fowles, 14 apiece from Stewart and Taurasi and 10 points from Elizabeth Williams as the USA stormed past China 83-46 in its first exhibition. Breaking a 25-25 tie with a 17-0 run to close out the second period, the USA grabbed control 42-25 at halftime and never looked back.
Following the WNBA season, the USA regrouped on Sept. 3 at the University of South Carolina to kick-off its pre-World Cup training and competition. Of the 18 athletes who participated in the South Carolina training camp in hopes of being named to the 2018 USA World Cup Team, 12 were members of the USA National Team pool, while six possessed prior USA Basketball experience, and were expected to contend for future USA National Team rosters.
The 18 athletes were split into two teams for the Red-White exhibition game on Sept. 5. USA Red Team members included USA National Team members Charles, Tiffany Mitchell, Nneka Ogwumike, Plum and Tuck, and were joined by Diamond DeShields, Tyasha Harris, Ruthy Hebard and Sabrina Ionescu. On the USA White Team were Clarendon, Collier, Dolson, Allisha Gray, Kelsey Mitchell, Sims and Wilson, and joining them on the White squad were Arike Ogunbowale and Jessica Shepard.
USA White treated fans to a 100-75 win over USA Red in a game that capped off the South Carolina portion of the USA National Team’s training camp. For the victorious USA White, Ogunbowale was the game’s high scorer with 18 points and five assists and Wilson added 16 points and seven rebounds. For the USA Red, Nneka Ogwumike had 17 points and DeShields, who was later added to the 2018-20 USA National Team pool, added 16 points.
Heading up the coast to train in New York ahead of a pair of exhibition games in Bridgeport, Connecticut, the USA roster featured Charles, Clarendon, Collier, DeShields, Dolson, Allisha Gray, Ionescu, Kelsey Mitchell, Tiffany Mitchell, Nneka Ogwumike, Plum, Sims, Tuck, Elizabeth Williams and Wilson.
All 15 players logged minutes as the USA overcame a 16-point deficit in a 74-68 win over Canada on Sept. 8 at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Wilson led the way with 15 points and 10 rebounds and went 9-of-10 from the line.
Trailing by two points to start the fourth quarter, the USA outscored Japan 35-18 in the final 10 minutes to earn a 102-87 exhibition win on Sept. 10 at George Washington University’s Charles E. Smith Center in Washington, D.C.
The USA, which was pared down to a 14-person roster with the departure of Ionescu after the Canada contest, was led by the inside powers of Wilson, who finished with 26 points and three blocked shots, Nneka Ogwumike, who contributed 22 points and 10 rebounds, and Charles, who rounded out the USA’s double-digit scorers with 12 points and a USA team-high five assists.
Following its domestic training, 16 finalists for the 2018 USA World Cup Team were announced and included Bird, Charles, Clarendon, Collier, Delle Donne, Griner, Loyd, Kelsey Mitchell, Tiffany Mitchell, Nneka Ogwumike, Plum, Stewart, Taurasi, Tuck, Elizabeth Williams and Wilson. Kelsey Mitchell, however, did not continue on with the team due to a family emergency.
Bird, Delle Donne, Loyd and Stewart were playing in the WNBA Finals and did not join the team until Spain. Griner and Taurasi joined up with the finalists for the team’s three-game exhibition series in Antibes, France. Thus, the USA played with an 11-member roster in France.
The USA on Sept. 15 defeated Canada 84-68 as Wilson scored a team-high 14 points, Griner added 13 and Taurasi scored 10 points.
The next game was a lopsided 109-58 victory over Senegal on Sept. 16 as the USA recorded 35 assists and shot 62.1% from the field. Wilson finished with 22 points, Tuck added 15, Plum contributed 12 points and nine assists and Griner and Tiffany Mitchell scored 10 points each.
Meeting host France on Sept. 17 in the final game of the four-team tournament, the USA fended off France for a 77-60 victory and capped its September exhibition schedule with a 5-0 record. With the USA leading 50-46 at the start of the fourth period, the USA outscored France 27-14 in the final 10 minutes to secure the win.
Taurasi led the way with 16 points, six assists and five rebounds, and she was named MVP of the four-team, round-robin tournament, which saw France finish second, Canada third and Senegal in fourth place. Additionally, Charles finished with 14 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter, along with 12 rebounds; Griner added 11 points, six rebounds and three blocks; and Plum contributed 12 points and five assists.
Following the tournament in Antibes, the U.S. squad traveled to Tenerife, Spain, the site of the 2018 FIBA World Cup, where the 12-member team was finalized.
2017-18 USA Basketball Women’s National Team Training Camps Participants
USA vs. China Exhibition
Fall 2018 – Pre-World Cup
*Not a member of the 2017-18 USA National Team; participated in the 2018 fall training as a future USA National Team hopeful.
2017-18 USA National Team Coaching Staffs
Head Coach: Dawn Staley, University of South Carolina
Court Coaches/Assistant Coaches:
Brian Agler, Los Angeles Sparks (2)
Michelle Clark-Heard, University of Western Kentucky (1)
Dan Hughes, Seattle Storm (2, 3, 4)
Cheryl Reeve, Minnesota Lynx (2, 3, 4, 5)
Jennifer Rizzotti, George Washington University (1, 3, 4, 5)
Sue Semrau, Florida State University (1)
Jeff Walz, University of Louisville (1)
- Court Coach Fall 2017 (Sept. 30-Oct. 2 in Santa Barbara, California)
- Court Coach Winter 2018 (Feb. 9-11 in Columbia, South Carolina)
- Assistant Coach Spring 2018 (April 24-25 in Seattle, Washington)
- Assistant Coach USA vs. China exhibition (April 26 in Seattle, Washington)
- Assistant Coach Fall 2018 (Sept. 3-17 in Columbia, South Carolina; White Plains, New York; Bridgeport, Connecticut; Washington, D.C.; Antibes, France)
2018 USA National Team Results (6-0)
|Date||Opp.||W/L||Score||High Scorer||High Rebounder||High Assists|
|4/26||China||W||83-46||16-Fowles||6-Dolson, Tuck||5- Bird|
|9/08||Canada||W||74-68||15- Wilson||10- Wilson||5- Clarendon|
|9/10||Japan||W||102-87||26- Wilson||10- Ogwumike||5- Charles|
|9/15||Canada||W||84-68||14- Wilson||6-Clarendon, Plum, Tuck||4- Plum|
|9/16||Senegal||W||109-58||22- Wilson||8-Clarendon, Collier||9- Collier, Plum|
|9/17||France||W||77-60||16- Taurasi||12- Charles||6- Taurasi|
2018 USA National Team Cumulative Statistics (6-0)
NOTE: Statistics do not include the USA's Red-White intrasquad exhibition game.