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USA Women's U17 World Championship Team Additional Quotes

  • Date:
    Jun 2, 2016

Janelle Bailey (Providence Day School/Matthews, N.C.)
What were your first thoughts knowing you made the team?
I didn’t know what to say, because it’s been a long road for me. All of this work I’ve been putting into this, and to see it pay off is crazy.

What’s the feeling like when you heard your name called?
I was the first name called in alphabetical order, so I didn’t know what to do at first. I was relaxed, but then I started crying a little bit. It was more of a sense of excitement though.

How did you think you performed this past week?
It was up and down for me, because some days I felt like I wasn’t challenging myself enough or not doing something right. I just tried to focus on the little things that most people wouldn’t do, be a good teammate and let everything else come to me.

Jenna Brown (The Lovett School/Ruckersville, Va.)
What were your first thoughts knowing you made the team?
To be perfectly honest, I am numb right now. I’ve been thinking about this moment since the trials last year. I think I’m overwhelmed with emotion right now and I don’t have any, because it hasn’t really hit me yet.

Since you made it to the final cuts last year, did that start to come up as this trials process started to wind down?
Ever since I left the trials last year, that feeling has been in the back of my head. I hated that feeling of getting so close and not making it.

How did you think you performed this past week?
I think I played pretty well. I became more confident handling the ball, and there were less people, so I showed what I could do.

What’s your initial reaction of what strengths this team possesses?
We’re an up-tempo team. I think we will be able to run a lot of teams off the floor with our transition game, and we know we’ll be strong defensively.

Sam Brunelle (William Monroe H.S./Ruckersville, Va.)
What were your first thoughts knowing you made the team?
I don’t know what’s going through my head. It is spinning in so many directions, but for great reasons.

What’s the feeling like when you heard your name called?
I thought my eyes were going to come out of the sockets. It’s such a great feeling that’s really hard to describe.

How did you think you performed this past week?
This evening’s scrimmage wasn’t how I wanted it to end. But there were these days when I thought they were great, and times when you know it wasn’t your best, but all I could do was just keep moving forward.

What’s your initial reaction of what strengths this team possesses?
We all clicked together. You could put any five together, and we could play together. The chemistry is already there. Everyone is highly skilled, and we are a big team.

Charli Collier (Barbers Hill H.S./Mont Belvieu, Texas)
What were your first thoughts knowing you made the team?
The feeling that all the hard work paid off. We’ve been here for so long, and everyone has been working our tails off. People don’t really know what goes on behind the scenes. I’m so excited right now.

What’s the feeling like when you heard your name called?
I put my head down in my shirt and just went into shock. It’s still hard to believe.

What’s your initial reaction of what strengths this team possesses?
Well, I know we have a good chance of winning gold. We’ve all bonded together, and we know how to play so well together.

Aquira DeCosta (St. Mary’s H.S./Stockton, Calif.)
What’s the feeling like when you heard your name called?
I was speechless, because I was thinking about everything besides making the team, and I started to shake.

How did you think you performed this past week?
It was tough. Everyone wants to make the team. So, it all came down to this, and I was so shocked to hear my name.

What’s your initial reaction of what strengths this team possesses?
I think the inside players, because we have a lot of height, and then we can stretch away, because we have great shooters as well.

Maya Dodson (St. Francis H.S./Alpharetta, Ga.)
How did you feel when you learned you had been selected for the USA U17 World Championship Team?
I was really surprised; I was really excited at the same time. All my hard work paid off in the end. It was really hard to see all my friends get cut and have to stay, but I worked hard for the remainder of the try out, and I’m just happy I’m able to represent USA.

What will you bring to the team?
I’m a mismatch at the three, so it’s harder for shorter guards to guard me, but I can still defend shorter guards, and I’m able to get to the rim or pass it out to our shooters. I think I’m a great fit running the lane and helping us try to win gold this year.

Can you summarize what it means to you to have the opportunity to represent the United States?
It’s crazy. It’s not really hitting me yet, but it’s just awesome to have been picked out of 100-something girls to represent your country. You never would dream of that when you’re younger. You don’t realize you have the chance to, and I’m really happy I have the chance.

Destanni Henderson (Fort Meyers H.S./Fort Meyers, Fla.)
How did you feel when you learned you had been selected for the USA U17 World Championship Team?
It was a shocker, like, ‘Wow.’ I actually have pushed myself and worked for this. From last year, knowing that I didn’t make it, to having that feeling again – I didn’t want that feeling again. Then, I just busted out crying when they called my name, so I was really excited.

Did having that previous trials experience help you in this trials? And what did you focus on when you were out there this year?
It did help me, because the first time I didn’t really know what to expect, or what to do, or how to do something. This year I learned from it, and I really pushed it and basically tried to be a good team player and help my teammates.

What will you bring to the team?
All-around (skills), basically, but I really push the ball, got the ball up the floor and looked for wide open teammates.

Has it hit you that you’ll be wearing USA across your chest?
Kind of, sort of, but I’m just living in the moment right now. But, yeah, it’s really exciting.

Taylor Mikesell (Jackson H.S./Massillon, OH)
How did you feel when you learned you had been selected for the USA U17 World Championship Team?
Oh, at first I was in shock. Obviously, it’s an incredible honor. A lot of people sitting in there, it could have gone anyway, so it’s an honor to be on the list.

What will you bring to the team?
I think being a leader from the two spot. Just make plays from the two spot.

Did you focus on anything in particular in this year’s trials?
Honestly, from last year to this year I was just trying to be more vocal, just be more of a leader and knock down some more shots to get myself noticed a little more.

What does it mean to you to have the opportunity to wear USA across your chest?
It’s incredible. It’s hitting me, but it’s incredible. It’s an honor that is unreal.

Olivia Nelson-Ododa (Winder-Barrow H.S./Winder, Ga.)
How did you feel when you learned you had been selected for the USA U17 World Championship Team?
I felt so many emotions. I’m extremely happy, and I’m really excited about what’s coming up.

What did you focus on during trials and what will you bring to the team?
I tried focusing on just giving 100 percent and just giving full effort. I feel like I’ll bring whatever I can provide, defense, offense. Whatever they need from me, I’ll try and provide.

Has it set in what it means to you to have the opportunity to represent the United States?
No, it really hasn’t, but hopefully later it will, and I’m just really excited about what is coming up.

Sedona Prince (Liberty Hill H.S./Liberty Hill, Texas)
How did it feel when your name was called?
It felt awesome. It’s happened before, but it’s an amazing feeling.

What does it mean to you to make a second USA Basketball team?
Since we didn’t win last year, I think it is revenge. I think it a chance to come back and get a gold medal this year. This team is amazing, so it will be a great experience.

Abby Prohaska (Lakota West H.S./Liberty Township, Ohio)
How did it feel when your name was called?
Unbelievable, just hearing my name, having them say it, I can’t even believe it. I’m in shock.

Did you feel like you had played well?
I had confidence in myself, and I went in feeling pretty confident. But, you just never know. It’s not up to me.

What do you think it will feel like to represent your country?
Oh my gosh, I can’t even put it into words how amazing it is going to be. It’s a dream come true for sure. I’m just lucky to be able to fulfill it.

Christyn Williams (Central Arkansas Christian School/Little Rock, Ark.)
How did it feel when your name was called?
Man, it is the greatest feeling ever. My name didn’t get called last year, and I worked my butt off to hear my name get called this year. It’s just a great feeling.

What do you think you bring to the team?
Great leadership, and I’m a scorer, so points on the board, and positivity.

Did you feel like you had played well?
Yeah, I thought I did really well. Better than last year, so I thought I improved.

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