Winners Crowned At 2015 USA Basketball 3x3 National Tournament
Winning teams were crowned this afternoon at the 2015 USA Basketball 3x3 National Tournament at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, including men’s champions Corey Campbell (San Diego, Calif.), Derek Griffin (Denver, Colo.), Marcus King-Stockton (Denver, Colo.) and Gary Sugar (Denver, Colo.) of the lone undefeated team, Denver (8-0); and women’s champions Chrissy Given (Monroe, La.), Angela Goodman (Wardell, Mo.), Shamela Hampton (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Veshaundra Young (Pulaski, Tenn.) of team Unknowns (7-1).
In addition to winning the tournament, Denver and Unknowns each earned a berth into next summer’s 2016 USA Basketball 3x3 National Tournament, which will qualify one men’s and one women’s team for the 2016 FIBA World Championship in Guangzhou, China.
Additionally, Denver earned a place at the Mexico Masters 3x3 event on Sept. 9-10 in Mexico City, where two teams will qualify for the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Final in Abu Dhabi on Oct. 15-16, 2015.
Named MVP on the men’s side was Griffin, who placed second in the 2014 USA Basketball 3x3 National Tournament and won the tournament in 2013.
“I posted on social media, ‘Dream come true,’ because it is an honor,” Griffin said. “Every athlete that gets a chance to represent USA is honored in that way. Cory (Campbell) and I have worked and come so close at times to having that opportunity, then fall short. For it to finally come true, is a dream come true for both of us. It will be a memory that I will forever have.”
The women’s MVP was Hampton, who also was playing in her third USA Basketball 3x3 National Tournament after having finished third in 2013 and 2014.
“It is definitely mind blowing,” Hampton said of her MVP award. “I definitely thought my teammate Chrissy (Given) would get it, because she did lead us. Thank God that he gave me the talent and vocals to be a leader, to be loud and cheer for my teammates.”
In a championship game that was close throughout, Denver relied in part in its long-range shooting to overcome Prime (7-1) 22-18. In fact, it was a two-point basket from Griffin that sealed the win before time expired.
“With all of the hard work that we have put in it, I do feel kind of deserving,” said Campbell, who played alongside Griffin in 2013 and 2014. “This tournament was probably the most competitive, so it feels that much better to come out with no losses and to win everything.”
Taking on a team to which it had lost by one point in the preliminary round, Unknowns not only was victorious the second time around, but won the championship game 20-10 after taking control early on.
“For two of us, it was our first time playing, so we had to adjust to the rules and the way 3x3 is played,” said Givens. “Next year we will be better, because now we know each other. We know the rules. We know how the officials officiate. It is a tougher game than five-on-five, so you have to come here knowing that. We had to learn and fight through that at this tournament."
On July 24, the athletes took part in skills challenges. Winning the men’s Partner Hot Shot were Mike Liander (Queens/Elmhurst, N.Y.) and Anthony Soares (Queens/Jamaica Queens, N.Y.); in second place were Matt Ballenger (Gates of Hope/Boise, Idaho) and Joel Ryman (Gates of Hope/Boise, Idaho); and in third place were Levon Crawford (Midwest Connection/Madison, Wis.) and Trevon Wittwer (Midwest Connection/Redwood Falls, Minn.). The women’s Partner Hot Shot winners were: Kaylyn Radtke (Colorado College/Elizabeth, Colo.) and Korbyn Ukasick (Colorado College/Colorado Springs, Colo.); followed by Taylor Mayes (Hutchinson, Kan.) and Jade McIntosh (Splash Sisters/Colorado Springs, Colo.); and Tori Bryant (Denver/Denver, Colo.) and Kaylie Radar (Denver/Thornton, Colo.) in third.
In the Skills Challenge, Kelly McCarty (Gates of Hope/Santa Cruz, Calif.) won for the men, Joe Murt (Thadani’s All Stars/Dallas, Texas) was second and Paris Kyles (Prime/Brooklyn Park, Minn.) was third. In the women’s Skills Challenge, Jazmine Redmon (Zagbabes/Spokane, Wash.) was first, Chrissy Given (Unknowns/Monroe, La.) was second and Judy Jones (Teamwork/Phoenix, Ariz.) was third.
Finally, in the men’s 3-point Challenge, Kurtis Koenig (Prime/Waconia, Minn.) was first, Damon Huffman (Ariel/Flint, Mich.) was second and Josh Megyer (CO Ballerz/Colorado Springs, Colo.) was third. Jacqlyn Poss (Denver/Shoreview, Minn.) won the women’s 3-point Challenge, Angela Goodman (Unknowns/Wardell, Mo.) was second and Haiden Palmer (Zagbabes/Moreno Valley, Calif.) was third.