3x3 Thrillers in Atlanta and Washington D.C. Headline USA Basketball’s Red Bull 3x Qualifiers
Overtime Nailbiters in Atlanta and a Rising Alpha Dog in D.C Take Center Stage on the Path to Identify USA Basketball’s 3x3 National Team Players
Forty-two men’s and women’s teams in Atlanta and Washington D.C took to the court at official Red Bull 3X qualifiers June 29 on the path to identify USA Basketball’s 3x3 National Team players.
In Washington D.C., The St. James signed up to play with 15 minutes left before registration closed, and they ended up taking the crown. Led by former St. John’s Red Storm player Alpha “Iso” Bangura and former Coastal Carolina and Big South Conference Player of the Year Pele Paelay, they took advantages of mismatches and isolation sets to outlast Allstate 21-16.
“The DMV area (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) is known for creative play,” said Alpha Bangura. “We’re crafty, play off the bounce, and don’t waste dribbles. We do wide out crossovers, shifting guys left and right, and take our opponents on directly.”
In Atlanta, the men’s 3x3 division witnessed both semi-final matches go into intense overtime sessions, with Da Ballers and Core4 outlasting tough challenges to set up a finals showdown. In the men’s 3x3 championship, Da Ballers couldn’t miss from deep to take out Core4 21-10, which were led by three brothers of superstar player Paul Millsap (John, Elijah and Abe Millsap, along with Chris Anderson).
“We’ve known each other since high school and know how to play together,” said Montrayvious Dunn. “Shooters shoot and one of us is always going to be hot, so their size really didn’t matter, especially in this style of play with no check-ups.”
The Atlanta women’s division saw Just Hoops beat Kobe 15-9, navigating heated bracket play on the way to the qualifier title. The Just Hoops squad was comprised of players with college and professional experience overseas, but had only met each other three weeks ago while playing in a tournament in France. A friend in Atlanta told them to register for Red Bull 3X and they were thrilled to hear that 3x3 basketball will be a discipline within the 2020 Olympics for the first time, and that they had just earned official FIBA points on the path to gold.
“I didn’t know this was a qualifier for the USA Basketball 3x3 National Team, but Tokyo is definitely on my bucket list,” said Alexandra Hart of Just Hoops.
Three Red Bull 3X qualifiers are in the books with 19 more to come, including Minneapolis, MN on July 13 and Brooklyn, NY on July 20. These qualifying tournaments across the country will help identify the players who could potentially represent USA Basketball’s men’s and women’s 3x3 national teams.
The winning teams at these qualifiers will have an opportunity of advancing to the Red Bull USA Basketball 3X Regionals in the Fall of 2019, and then to the Red Bull USA Basketball 3X Nationals in March 2020, which will be used to select the USA men’s and women’s 3x3 national teams.
3x3 is played on a half court with a 10-minute game clock and 12-second shot clock, where the winner is the first team to score 21 points or the team in the lead at the end of the 10-minute regulation.
RED BULL 3X (Atlanta) – WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP BRACKET
- Just Hoop (Atlanta) – Alexandra Hart, J’Kyra Brown, Carrie Washington, Destini Feagin
- Kobe (Atlanta) – Dorian Sharp, Tashara Jones, Aysia Grimsley, Precious Price
RED BULL 3X (Atlanta) – MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP BRACKET
- Da Ballers (Atlanta) – Jeremy Martin, Montrayvious Dunn, Denetrick Terrell, Langston Nolley
- Core4 (Atlanta) – John Millsap, Elijah Millsap, Abe Millsap, Chris Anderson
RED BULL 3X (Washington D.C.) – MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP BRACKET
- The St. James (Washington D.C.) – Alpha Bangura, Pele Paelay, Terell Buyck
- AllState (Washington D.C.) – Damien Tunstalle, Steve Owens, Trevor Smith, Tyler Jenkins
For more information, please visit www.redbull.com/3X