Princeton’s Bella Alarie Added To USA Women’s U19 Trials Roster
Princeton University guard/forward Bella Alarie (Bethesda, Md.) has been added to the 2017 USA Basketball Women’s U19 World Cup Team trials roster, USA Basketball today announced. The addition of Alarie keeps the roster of participating athletes at 33 after the withdrawal of Tori McCoy (transfer TBD/Champaign, Ill.).
The 2017 Ivy League Rookie of the Year, Alarie earned Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors nine times and was a three-time Ivy League Player of the Week during the 2016-17 season. She averaged 12.6 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game for the 16-14 Tigers.
The 2017 USA Basketball Women’s U19 World Cup Team trials will be held May 18-21 at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and the 12-member team is expected to be announced May 21. Invitations were issued by the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee. Athletes eligible for this team must be 19 years old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 1998) and U.S. citizens.
University of Pittsburgh head coach Suzie McConnell-Serio, who led the 2016 USA U18 National Team to gold, will lead the USA U19 World Cup Team and will again be assisted by collegiate head coaches Kamie Ethridge from the University of Northern Colorado and Charlotte Smith from Elon University. Additionally, University of Delaware head coach Natasha Adair and Drake University head coach Jennie Baranczyk will serve as court coaches during the trials.
Six-time defending U19 gold medalists, the United States will look to make it seven gold medals in a row at the July 22-30 event in Cividale del Friuli and Udine, Italy.
In addition to Alarie, athletes who have accepted an invitation to attend trials include: Janelle Bailey (Providence Day School/Matthews, N.C.); Jeannie Boehm (Harvard/Winnetka, Ill.); Chennedy Carter (Timberview H.S./Arlington, Texas); Charli Collier (Barbers Hill H.S./Baytown, Texas); Sidney Cooks (Saint Joseph H.S./Kenosha, Wis.); Mikayla Coombs (Wesleyan School/Norcross, Ga.); Gabby Cooper (Syracuse/Lansing, Ill.); Crystal Dangerfield (Connecticut/Murfreesboro, Tenn.); Shug Dickson (Tulsa/St. Louis, Mo.); Kathleen Doyle (Iowa/LaGrange Park, Ill.); Dana Evans (West Side H.S./Gary, Ind.); Nadia Fingall (Stanford/Navarre, Fla); Tyasha Harris (South Carolina/Noblesville, Ind.); Ruthy Hebard (Oregon/Fairbanks, Alaska); Tamara Henshaw (South Florida/Palm Coast, Fla.); Becca Hittner (Drake/Urbandale, Iowa); Joyner Holmes (Texas/Cedar Hill, Texas); Stephanie Jones (Maryland/Havre de Grace, Md.); Jordan Lewis (Alabama/Windermere, Fla.); Aarion McDonald (Washington/Fresno, Calif.); Minyon Moore (Southern California/Hercules, Calif.); Kayla Overbeck (Vanderbilt/Newbury Park, Calif.); Sedona Prince (Liberty Hill H.S./Liberty Hill, Texas); Reili Richardson (Arizona State/Brea, Calif.); Kylee Shook (Louisville/Colorado Springs, Colo.); Amber Smith (Missouri/Shreveport, La.); Alecia Sutton (Texas/St. Louis, Mo.); Megan Walker (Monacan H.S./Chesterfield, Va.); Evina Westbrook (South Salem H.S./Salem, Ore.); Christyn Williams (Central Arkansas Christian School/Little Rock, Ark.); Jocelyn Willoughby (Virginia/East Orange, N.J.) and Aaliyah Wilson (Arkansas/Muskogee, Okla).
Chairing the selection committee is George Washington University head coach Jennifer Rizzotti, who directed the 2011 USA U19 World Championship and 2010 USA U18 National teams to gold medal finishes and served as support staff for the 2014 USA World Championship and 2016 U.S. Olympic teams. In addition to Rizzotti, members of the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee include 2008 Olympic gold medalist Kara Lawson Barling as the athlete representative, and joining Rizzotti as representatives of the NCAA are University of Texas head coach Karen Aston, Temple University head coach Tonya Cardoza and North Carolina State head coach Wes Moore.
FIBA U19 World Cup for Women
Originally known as the FIBA Junior World Championship, FIBA changed the names of its age-based world championships in 2005 to reflect the age of eligibility, and recently updated the names of all of its world championships to world cups. The tournament was held every four years starting in 1985. FIBA in 2005 modified its calendar and now conducts the U19 World Cup every other year. USA women's teams are 73-12 in U19/Junior World Cups, capturing a sixth-consecutive gold in 2015 with a 7-0 record.
The draw to determine the preliminary round was held Feb. 1. The USA was placed in Group A and will open against Mali on July 22, face China on July 23 and cap the preliminary round against host Italy on July 25.
Drawn into Group B were Egypt, Puerto Rico, Russia and Spain; Group C includes Canada, France, Latvia and South Korea; while Group D features Australia, Hungary, Japan and a nation from the Americas to be determined by FIBA at a later date. Brazil claimed bronze at the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship to qualify for this summer’s U19 tournament. However, the Brazil Basketball Federation has since been suspended by FIBA.
Following the preliminary round, teams will be seeded according to group play, and all participating teams will advance to the July 26 round of 16. Winners will advance to the July 28 medal quarterfinals, while the remaining teams will continue playing out for classification. The medal semifinals will be held July 29, and the gold and bronze medal games are slated for July 30.
Notable players to represent the USA at the FIBA U19 World Championship include: Alana Beard (2001), Essence Carson (2005), Tamika Catchings (1997), Bria Hartley (2011), Crystal Langhorne (2005), Jantel Lavender (2007), Lisa Leslie (1989), Rebecca Lobo (1993), Maya Moore (2007), Nnemkadi Ogwumike (2009), Vickie Orr (1985), Cappie Pondexter (2001), Katie Smith (1993), Dawn Staley (1989), Azurá Stevens (2015), Breanna Stewart (2011 and MVP of the 2013 U19 World Championship), Diana Taurasi (2001), Morgan Tuck (2011 and 2013) and A’ja Wilson (2013 and MVP of the 2015 U19 World Championship).