Allisha Gray Added to USA National Team’s November Tour Roster
Dallas Wings guard Allisha Gray (South Carolina), a member of the 2019-20 USA Basketball Women’s National Team pool and 2017 WNBA Rookie of the Year, has been added to the November roster for the USA’s four-game NCAA tour and three FIBA games in Brazil. Further, 2019 WNBA champion Elena Delle Donne (Washington Mystics/Delaware) injured her back during the WNBA Finals, and is unable to participate in the team’s November training and competitions.
The USA Basketball Women’s National Team will tip-off its preparations for a seventh-straight gold in Tokyo with four games against top 10 ranked NCAA Division I programs. Opening on Nov. 2 at Stanford University, the USA will play Oregon State University on Nov. 4, Texas A&M University on Nov. 7 and cap the first portion of its NCAA games against University of Oregon on Nov. 9. Ticket information for each game can be found at USAB.com/tickets.
Allisha Gray, the No. 4 pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft by the Dallas Wings, helped the University of South Carolina capture the 2017 NCAA Championship and was named to the 2017 All-Final Four and All-Regional teams. She also aided the Gamecocks to the 2017 Southeastern Conference Tournament and regular season titles. She played for two seasons for the University of North Carolina and in 2015 was named to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference first team and was a 2014 ACC All-Freshman Team selection.
In addition to Allisha Gray, previously announced athletes who will compete in the four-game NCAA tour are: Seimone Augustus (Minnesota Lynx/Louisiana State), Sue Bird (Seattle Storm/Connecticut), Layshia Clarendon (Connecticut Sun/California), Napheesa Collier (Minnesota Lynx), Skylar Diggins-Smith (Dallas Wings/Notre Dame), Sylvia Fowles (Minnesota Lynx/Louisiana State), Chelsea Gray (Los Angeles Sparks/Duke), Nneka Ogwumike (Los Angeles Sparks/Stanford), Kelsey Plum (Las Vegas Aces/Washington), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury/Connecticut) and A’ja Wilson (Las Vegas Aces/South Carolina).
Chelsea Gray will miss the game at Stanford and Plum will miss the first two games due to previous personal commitments.
In all, fans during the four NCAA games will see athletes who own a combined 14 Olympic and 14 FIBA World Cup gold medals.
Following competition of its November NCAA tour, the USA will participate in the Nov. 10-18 FIBA Americas Pre-Olympic Qualifying Tournament. The USA will play in Group B in Bahia Blanca, Argentina, and will open against Brazil on Nov. 14, play host Argentina on Nov. 16 and close out against Colombia on Nov. 17. FIBA Americas Pre-Olympic Qualifying Tournament Group A, which includes Canada, Cuba, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, will play in Edmonton, Canada. The top two teams from each of those groups will qualify to play in one of the 2020 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments (sites TBD), Feb. 2-10.
For the FIBA Americas Pre-Olympic Qualifying Tournament, Augustus, Diamond DeShields (Chicago Sky), Allisha Gray, Arike Ogunbowale (Dallas Wings) and Plum will join the seven available 2019-20 USA National Team core members: Bird, Diggins-Smith, Fowles, Chelsea Gray, Ogwumike, Taurasi and Wilson.
Dan Hughes (Seattle Storm), Cheryl Reeve (Minnesota Lynx) and Jennifer Rizzotti (George Washington), who assisted the USA to a gold medal at the 2018 FIBA World Cup and the 2019 FIBA AmeriCup, are serving as the 2019-20 USA National Team assistant coaches.
Staley and Rizzotti, due to commitments to their collegiate teams, will not be available for the next two training camps, and Hughes and Reeve will serve as co-coaches.
Past USA Basketball teams ahead of the 1996, 2000 and 2008 Olympic Games competed against collegiate teams, and over the course of those three tours, the USA earned a 39-1 record competing against a combined total of 30 different NCAA Division I teams.
The USA National Team, which already has qualified for the 2020 Olympics, is taking advantage of and participating in FIBA’s new Olympic qualification process, which began with the recently concluded FIBA AmeriCup, where the U.S. finished 6-0 and captured gold on Sept. 29 in Puerto Rico. The top eight finishing teams in the AmeriCup qualified for the Nov. 10-18 FIBA Americas Pre-Olympic Qualifying Tournament.