Thirty-Five Athletes Accept Invitations to USA Women’s U17 World Cup Team Trials
The roster of invited athletes for the 2018 USA Basketball Women’s U17 World Cup Team Trials today was revealed, and it includes all 12 members of the gold medal winning 2017 USA Women’s U16 National Team, 16 additional players who have participated in at least one previous USA Basketball event and six athletes who will take part in their first USA Basketball trials.
Trials to select the finalists for the 12-member 2018 USA Women’s U17 World Cup Team will be held May 24-28 at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Athletes eligible for this team must be U.S. citizens who are 17 years old or younger (born on or after Jan. 1, 2001).
“We are excited to have such a talented group back to compete for roster spots on the 2018 USA Basketball Women’s U17 World Cup Team,” said Carol Callan, USA Basketball director, women’s national team and chair of the USA Basketball Women’s Developmental Committee, which is responsible for selecting the USA U17 athletes and staff. “The trials will feature many athletes with USA Basketball team or trials experience, and the group will be strengthened by new talent as well. All of the athletes at trials will have to compete against the best players at their age, and we look forward to seeing who rises to that challenge.”
Returning from the 2017 USA U16 national team are: tournament MVP Aliyah Boston (Worcester Academy/Worcester, Mass.); Fran Belibi (Regis Jesuit H.S./Centennial, Colo.); Samantha Brunelle (William Monroe H.S./Ruckersville, Va.); Paige Bueckers (Hopkins H.S./St. Louis Park, Minn.); Caitlin Clark (Dowling Catholic H.S./West Des Moines, Iowa); Zia Cooke (Rogers H.S./Toledo, Ohio); Azzi Fudd (St. John’s College H.S., D.C./Falls Church, Va.); Jordan Horston (Columbus Africentric Early College/Columbus, Ohio); Diamond Miller (Franklin H.S./Somerset, N.J.); Jordyn Oliver (Prosper H.S./Prosper, Texas); Celeste Taylor (Long Island Lutheran H.S./Valley Stream, N.Y.); and Kylee Watson (Mainland Regional H.S./Linwood, N.J.).
Sixteen players have taken part in at least one prior USA Basketball trials, including Sarah Andrews (MacArthur H.S./Irving, Texas); River Baldwin (Pleasant Home School/Andalusia, Ala.); Cameron Brink (Southridge H.S./Beaverton, Ore.); Maddie Burke (Central Bucks H.S. West/Doylestown, Pa.); Sasha Goforth (Fayetteville H.S./Fayetteville, Ark.); Nyah Green (Allen H.S./Allen, Texas); Treasure Hunt (Hamilton Heights Christian Academy/Chattanooga, Tenn.); Angel Jackson (Salesian College Prep/Richmond, Calif.); Rickea Jackson (Detroit Edison Public School Academy/Detroit, Mich.); Haley Jones (Archbishop Mitty H.S./Santa Cruz, Calif.); Natalija Marshall (Christ the King Regional H.S./Forest Hills, N.Y.); Jordyn Merritt (Plano Senior H.S./Plano, Texas); Ramani Parker (Central H.S./Fresno, Calif.); Sydney Parrish (Hamilton Southeastern H.S./Fishers, Ind.); Ashten Prechtel (Discovery Canyon H.S./Colorado Springs, Colo.); and Angel Reese (St. Frances Academy/Randallstown, Md.).
On March 25, Boston, Brunelle, Bueckers and and Hailey Van Lith (Cashemere H.S./Wenatchee, Wash.) won the 2018 USA Basketball Women’s 3x3 U18 National Championship, and on April 4, the four were named to the 2018 U.S. Youth Olympic Women’s Basketball Team that will compete in the 2018 Youth Olympic Games Oct. 6-18 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
New to USA Basketball national team trials will be: Jakia Brown-Turner (Bishop McNamara H.S./Temple Hills, Md.); Allison Campbell (Bellwood-Antis H.S./Altoona, Pa.); Amari DeBerry (Williamsville South H.S./Williamsville, N.Y.); Elauna Eaton (Jonesboro Senior H.S./Jonesboro, Ark.); Hannah Gusters (Duncanville H.S./DeSoto, Texas); and Gabby Hutcherson (Westerville South H.S./Columbus, Ohio).
Also taking part in the 2018 USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Championship were: Burke, Fudd, Parrish and Watson (BS30); Merritt (Metropath); and Parker (Team Denver). The 2017 USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Tournament featured Belibi (Denver), while Prechtel (Shock) took part in the 2016 USA Basketball 3x3 U18 National Tournament.
It was possible for athletes who did not receive an invitation to participate in trials by submitting an application by April 3. Due to space limitations, a maximum of 115 applicant athletes will be permitted to attend trials, as determined by the USA Basketball Developmental National Team Committee. Athletes will be notified of the committee’s decision to attend trials by April 13, and the complete trials roster will be announced in late April.
The 35 invited athletes include 16 players who will graduate from high school in 2019, 17 who will graduate in 2020 and two who are members of the high school class of 2021.
Five players are from Texas; California, New York and Ohio each are represented by three players; sending two players to trials are Arkansas, Colorado, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia; while boasting of one player apiece are Alabama, Iowa, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington.
Following trials, the selected finalists will remain in Colorado Springs for training camp from May 28-31 and the naming of the official roster on May 31. The 12 team members will return to Colorado Springs to resume training camp July 4-20.
2018 FIBA U17 World Cup
The FIBA U17 World Cup will take place July 21-29 at Minsk's Sport Palace and Falcon Club in Minsk, Belarus.
The draw was held March 6 and the USA was placed into Group B where it will face Italy on July 21, Mali on July 22 and China on July 24 in preliminary round play. Game times are still to be determined.
Group A includes Belarus, Colombia, France and Japan; playing in Group C will be Argentina, Hungary, New Zealand and Spain; while Group D features Angola, Australia, Canada and Latvia.
The FIBA U17 World Cup, which is held every two years, originated in 2010 and features the world’s top 17-year-old and younger players.
USA women's teams are 29-1 all-time in U17 World Cup play, capturing three gold medals (2010, 2012 and 2014) and one bronze medal (2016).
Most recently, the 2016 USA U17 World Cup Team rebounded from a semifinal loss to eventual gold medalist Australia and earned the bronze medal with a 65-50 victory over China. In 2014, Joyner Holmes and Katie Lou Samuelson were named to the five-member all-tournament team after helping the USA edge host Spain 77-75 in the gold medal game. In 2012 Diamond DeShields was named MVP of the tournament, with Linnae Harper joining her on the all-tournament team. And in 2010, the USA squad outscored opponents by 37.4 points a game, led by Elizabeth Williams (13.5 ppg, 7.9 rpg.) and Breanna Stewart (12.8 ppg., 7.5 rpg.).
Notable players to represent the U.S. include: Lindsay Allen (2012), DeShields (2012), Rebecca Greenwell (2012), Holmes (2014),Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (2010), Ariel Massengale (2010), Olivia Nelson-Ododa (2016), Mercedes Russell (2012), Samuelson (2014), Stewart (2010), Christyn Williams (2016) and Elizabeth Williams (2010).