Team Quest Wins USA Basketball Women’s 3x3 U18 National Championship
With a perfect, 7-0 record, Team Quest was crowned champion at the 2018 USA Basketball Women’s 3x3 U18 National Championship after a hard-fought 21-18 win over BS30 (5-2) in the gold medal game on Sunday afternoon at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Team Quest’s Hailey Van Lith (Cashmere High School/Wenatchee, Wash.), who scored four of her team’s last five points to help seal the victory, was named MVP of the women’s tournament.
“I could feel the time running down and the game was so close,” Van Lith explained. “I just thought if we can put it away here, we will win this, and I just did what the team needed to get that win.
“It feels amazing,” Van Lith added of the championship. “I had a new experience coming here. I had never been a part of USA Basketball before, and I love it. My teammates are awesome. I just really felt what it felt like to be surrounded by good players and play quality basketball.”
The championship game was the second meeting for BS30 and Team Quest, and Quest earned the win the first time around as well. The second edition featured six lead changes in 8:55 minutes of play.
Team Quest built its largest lead of four points, 11-7 with 7:43 remaining, but found itself trailing 16-14 with 3:50 on the clock. Along with four points from Van Lith, Team Quest got two points from Aliyah Boston (Worcester Academy/St.Thomas, USVI) in the final minutes.
“I wasn’t nervous, and I don’t think our team was either,” Boston said. “We were just excited, ready to play. It was very physical game, because we each had great talent.”
BS30 reached the championship game with a 20-15 win over Team Denver (6-1); while Team Quest earned its championship berth with a 21-9 win over Metropath (5-2).
The USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Championships also served as a trials for the 2018 U.S. Youth Olympic Games, which will be held Oct. 6-18 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The USA women, by virtue of a gold medal finish at the 2017 FIBA 3x3 U18 World Cup, and Argentina as the host nation both are assured a spot in the women’s 3x3 YOG tournament. The remaining 18 places will be allocated based on the FIBA world ranking as of April 1, 2018.
The members of the 2018 U.S. Youth Olympic Women’s Basketball Team, which will be selected from the pool of participants at the 2018 USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Championships, must be U.S. citizens who are 18 years old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 2000). The 2018 U.S. Youth Olympic Women’s Basketball Team will be announced at a later date.