USA Women’s National Team Weekly Update: Nneka Ogwumike Continues to Impress, KML Eclipses Taurasi's 3-Point Record
Every Thursday throughout the 2014-15 season, USA Basketball will report on the progress of the athletes competing overseas and in NCAA action.
Below are recaps (in order) from the NCAA, China, EuroCup, EuroLeague, Australia and South Korea. Check back weekly to see how each player is progressing through the season.
NCAA - UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT
2013-16 USA Basketball Women’s National Team head coach Geno Auriemma and his No. 2 Huskies, including USA National Team members Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Breanna Stewart, are off to a 15-1 start to the season, its lone loss an 88-86 overtime defeat by Stanford.
Two-time USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year Stewart is leading the squad for scoring, averaging 16.8 ppg., to go with team second-bests of 7.2 rpg. and 2.0 bpg., while adding 3.1 apg. and 1.6 spg.
Mosqueda-Lewis, who eclipsed former Husky All-American Diana Taurasi’s record of 318 for all-time career 3-pointers at Connecticut and now has 320 midway through the season, is averaging 13.6 ppg., 4.8 rpg., 2.8 apg. and 1.4 spg. She has also shot 45 3-pointers this season, an average of 3.0 per game.
Auriemma in December became the women’s NCAA Division I leader for winning percentage, surpassing Leon Barmore’s .8688. Auriemma’s current winning percentage is .8695. He currently ranks sixth among women’s NCAA Division I head coaches in terms of total victories with 893. Ahead of him are former Texas head coach Jody Conradt (900, 38 seasons), current head coaches Tara VanDerveer (939, 34th season), C. Vivian Stringer (941 44th season), Sylvia Hatchell (950 40th season) and former Tennesse head coach Pat Summitt (1,098, 38 seasons).
CHINA THROUGH SECOND STAGE ROUND 19
The stats for the past three games, rounds 17-19, have not been posted on asia-basket.com, however, Brittney Griner’s Beijing (20-6) squad still leads the standings after posting a 2-1 week; Maya Moore and Shanxi (19-7) are in second place and picked up three wins over the past week -- including a 72-71 victory over Beijing. Sylvia Fowles’ Shanghai club also went 2-1 on the week, including a disappointing 79-73 loss to Guangdong (11-14) after barely escaping with victories over seventh-ranked Shenyang (10-16) and Liaoning (12-13), which is relegated to playing for 9th-12th places.
The only USA National Team member playing in China who is not among the contenders for a championship is Candice Dupree. Her Zhejiang (6-16) team is in fourth place in the consolation round.
WCBA Second Round Standings
|1. Beijing (Griner)||20-6|
|2. Shanxi (Moore)||19-7|
|3. Shanghai (Fowles)||17-9|
|12. Zhejiang (Dupree)||6-16|
USA National Team Members Among Top 10 WCBA Leaders (through round 16 only)
Points: Moore (1st, 30.5 ppg.), Fowles (2nd, 28.8 ppg.), Griner (4th, 21.2 ppg.)
Rebounds: Fowles (2nd, 13.0 rpg.), Moore (6th, 8.4 rpg.), Griner (8th, 7.6)
Assists: Moore (4th, 4.1 apg.)
Steals: Moore (1st, 3.6 spg.), Fowles (6th, 2.0 spg.)
Blocked Shots: Griner (1st, 3.7 bpg.), Fowles (2nd, 1.5 bpg.), Moore (5th, 0.8 bpg.)
EUROCUP WEEK 7
The EuroCup was comprised of seven first round groups of four teams and one group of three. Following a double round-robin (home and away) in each group, the top two finishing teams were seeded and advanced to the knockout stages, beginning with round of 16 and continuing through the finals. The EuroCup first round is complete and the round of 16 began on Jan. 15, 2015.
Each playoff round will consist of a home and away game, with the aggregate score between each pair of teams determining the winner for advancement to the next round. The champion will have an opportunity to contend as a wildcard entry to the 2015-16 EuroLeague competition.
Dolson scored 10 points and grabbed seven boards to help Spartak Moscow Region (6-1) squad open EuroCup round of 16 play with a close 71-69 victory over Istanbul Universitesi BGD S.K. (4-3) this week.
The first game was played in Istanbul, while Game 2 will be contested in Russia on Jan. 22 for the right to advance to the quarterfinals. Istanbul University must win the game by more than two points in order to move on to the next round.
Dolson, the lone American on her squad, is averaging 11.5 ppg. and 7.0 rpg.
Bria Hartley and Kayla McBride:
Helped Hungary’s UE Sopron to a perfect 6-0 record in Group H and a commanding 103-79 victory in the first game of its round of 16 double-header against Sweden’s Udominate Basket (2-3). McBride poured in 20 points and had three assists and three steals, while Hartley contributed 16 points, seven assists and three steals. Sopron could lose by 23 points in next week’s game and still advance to the quarterfinals.
McBride is averaging a EuroCup 8th-best 16.4 ppg. to go with 6.6 rpg., while Hartley is contributing 11.9 ppg., 3.9 rpg. and 3.3 apg.
EUROLEAGUE WEEK 9
The new year rang in the start of the second half of the EuroLeague season and last week saw the return to action of Danielle Robinson (ZVVZ USK Prague) following rehab and the arrival of Lindsay Whalen (Agu Spor Kulubu), upping the number of USA National Team members competing for the title this year’s title to 12, as Chiney Ogwumike has not returned to Italy.
Diana Taurasi scored a game-high 22 points to go with six rebounds and four assists, while Candace Parker contributed a double-double of 15 points and 11 caroms as UMMC Ekaterinburg (7-1) earned a 77-69 win over France’s BLMA in Russia. Ekat trailed 15-13 with three minutes left in the first quarter, but that’s when Taurasi took over, scoring 10 of her team’s 12 points to close out the period up 25-19. BLMA closed to two points with six minutes to play before halftime, but Ekat again pulled away and closed the half up 48-36 and Ekat went on to earn its seventh EuroLeague win.
Seimone Augustus and Nnemkadi Ogwumike’s helped power Dynamo Kursk (6-1) to a 92-68 victory over Jantel Lavender and Courtney Vandersloot’s Wisla Can-Pack (3-5) club. Dynamo trailed briefly in the first quarter, but a 9-0 run to close the first quarter put Dynamo up 27-15 and the lead expanded from there. Ogwumike, who retained her position atop the EuroLeauge’s scorers and rebounders lists, had an impressive stat line, leading her team in points (20), rebounds (12), assists (7) and steals (5). Augustus had a quiet night and finished with nine points, three rebounds and three steals. On the other end, Lavender posted a double-double of 14 points and 14 boards, while Vandersloot scored 15 points and dished out seven assists.
Danielle Robinson and ZVVZ USK Prague (4-3) had the week off and the team remains in third place in Group A.
Lindsay Whalen scored 22 points and passed out four assists to lead Agu Spor (4-5) to a 96-76 victory over Energa Torun (2-7) in Kayseri, Turkey. With Whalen, who shot 9-of-11 from the field against Torun, on its roster, Agu Spor is making a push for a top-four position in the standings in order to move to the next round. It won’t be easy, however, as the Turk club closes out the season at Avenida (7-2), against Bourges Basket (5-4), at Beretta Famila (4-5), versus Nadezhda (6-3) and at BK IMOS Brno (0-9). Without Whalen, Agu Spor defeated Avenida 71-63, clipped Nadezhda 53-49 and won over Brno 64-53; while losing to Bourges 79-71 and Beretta 75-82. With Whalen giving her team a different look, it’s not impossible, but it won’t be a cakewalk.
Twenty points, eight rebounds and four steals from DeWanna Bonner led Nadezhda (6-3), still without the services of Glory Johnson, to a 66-50 upset of CB Avenida (7-2).
Fenerbahce (8-1) had an easy time against BK IMOS Brno (0-9) and knowing it wasn’t going to be a tough contest, Fener head coach Jacek Winnicki rested Tina Charles completely and played Angel McCoughtry just 10 minutes in the 79-54 victory.
Beretta Famila Schio (4-5), playing without Chiney Ogwumike who has not returned from break, took a 41-30 into halftime and picked up a much-needed 79-59 victory over Bourges Basket (5-4).
EuroLeague Stats Leaders
Points: 1. Ogwumike, N. (20.6); 2. Bonner, D. (17.0); 3. Charles, T. (17.0); 4. Taurasi, D. (16.4); 6. Lavender, J. (15.9); 7. Parker, C. (15.8); 8. McCoughtry, A. (15.1); 17. Augustus, S. (13.3); 18. Johnson, G. (12.9).
Rebounds: 1. Ogwumike, N. (11.9); 3. Parker, C. (10.9); 4. Lavender, J. (10.8); 13. Johnson, G. (8.0); 18. Charles, T. (6.9); 20. Bonner, D. (6.4).
Assists: 2. Taurasi, D. (6.5), 6. Vandersloot, C. (4.4); 19. Augustus, S. (2.6)
2014-15 EuroLeague Standings
|3.||ZVVZ USK Praha||4-3|
|4.||Wisla Can-Pack Krakow||3-5|
|7.||Good Angels Kosice||2-6|
|2.||Club Baloncesto Avenida||7-2|
|3.||Nadezhda Orenburg Region||6-3|
|4.||Tango Bourges Basket||5-4|
|5.||Agü Spor Kulübü||4-5|
|6.||Beretta Famila Schio||4-5|
|8.||BK IMOS Brno||0-9|
Cappie Pondexter and the Dandedong Rangers won seven of their past eight games, including last week’s 92-87 victory over Townsville, marking the Fire’s third loss of the season. The Rangers have moved up near the bottom of the ladder and into playoff contention. Playing alongside former Phoenix Mercury teammate Penny Taylor, Pondexter and Taylor scored 23 points apiece in the victory over Townsville. Pondexter is averaging 16.6 ppg. and 4.1 apg. this season.
Odyssey Sims and Alyssa Thomas are teaming up for Hanabank, which is currently 6-18 through the first 24 games of the 37-round season. The team split its two games last week, earning a 63-57 win over Winnus (4-19) as Sims contributed 12 points and Thomas added 10 points and 10 boards. Hanabank dropped its contest against Bichumi (12-12) 78-68, despite receiving 20 points from Sims and 15 points and seven rebounds from Thomas.
Thomas is averaging league-bests of 19.2 ppg., 10.5 rpg. and 3.9 apg., while Sims boasts averages of 12.3 ppg., 4.2 rpg. and 2.4 apg.