Katie Lou Samuelson Added to USA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Team
Katie Lou Samuelson (Seattle Storm/Connecticut/ Huntington Beach, Calif.) today was named to the four-member USA Women’s 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Team, which will compete for an Olympic berth at the FIBA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament May 26-30 in Austria. The top three teams at the FIBA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament will earn a berth into the Tokyo Olympic Games.
“I am super excited to be a part of this team,” Samuelson said. “It is such an honor to be able to go and compete in this tournament to hopefully qualify for the Olympics. I cannot wait to start playing, and I am excited to be playing 3x3 again. 3x3 has always been extremely fun for me, and I look forward to representing the USA once again.”
Samuelson joins USA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying teammates Stefanie Dolson (Chicago Sky/Connecticut/ Port Jervis, N.Y.), Allisha Gray (Dallas Wings/South Carolina/Sandersville, Ga.) and Kelsey Plum (Las Vegas Aces/Washington/Poway, Calif.).
Napheesa Collier (Minnesota Lynx/Connecticut/O’Fallon, Mo.), who was named to the team in February 2020, no longer is able to participate. The FIBA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament originally was set for March 2020.
Samuelson, who currently is playing for Spanish team Perfumerias Avenida, won 3x3 gold medals at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games, 2013 FIBA 3x3 U18 World Cup and 2013 FIBA Americas 3x3 U18 Championship. She also won five-on-five gold medals with the USA at the 2019 FIBA AmeriCup, 2014 FIBA U17 World Cup and 2013 FIBA Americas U16 Championship. She earned a bronze medal at the shootout competition at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games, and she was named to the five-member all-tournament team at the 2014 FIBA U17 World Cup.
Most recently, Samuelson helped the USA to two wins against collegiate teams and three wins at the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in 2020. In February 2020, she participated in training camp for the USA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Team and the USA National Team during NBA All-Star weekend.
Now a member of the WNBA Seattle Storm, Samuelson played for the Dallas Wings in 2020 and for the Chicago Sky in 2019, which drafted her with the fourth pick in the 2019 WNBA draft.
Samuelson won a national championship at the University of Connecticut in 2016 and reached the Final Four in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
The USA Men’s 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament Team also will compete for a top-three finish and Olympic berth at the FIBA 3x3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Austria.
Eight men’s and eight women’s team will participate in the Tokyo Olympic Games 3x3 tournaments from July to 24-28, 2021.
Already qualified for the Olympics on the women’s side are China, Mongolia, Romania and Russia; while on the men’s side already qualified are host Japan, China, Russia and Serbia. Those berths were awarded in November 2019 and were based on point totals earned in FIBA 3x3 competitions.
The eighth-and-final Olympic berths for men and women will go to the winning teams at a FIBA 3x3 Universality Qualifying Tournament from June 4-6 in Debrecen, Hungary, which will feature six men’s and six women’s teams from countries that did not have a basketball team at the 2012 or 2016 Olympic Games.