Following its three-day camp in Columbia, South Carolina, which culminated with an entertaining intrasquad exhibition game on Sept. 5, 14 athletes, headlined by New York Liberty forward, two-time Olympic and two-time World Cup gold medalist Tina Charles, will continue on to USA Basketball’s next training camp in the hopes of claiming a spot on the 2018 USA World Cup Team.
Additionally, the roster further will be bolstered by the addition of Elizabeth Williams, who helped the Atlanta Dream advance to the 2018 WNBA semifinals.
The U.S. will train Sept. 7 (10:30 a.m. EDT) at the New York Knicks practice facility in Tarrytown, New York, before taking on Canada in an exhibition contest on Sept. 8 (7 p.m. EDT) at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Two-time defending World Cup gold medalists, the USA is preparing for the 2018 FIBA World Cup, which will be held Sept. 22-30 in Tenerife, Spain.
Nneka Ogwumike (Los Angeles Sparks) and Odyssey Sims (Los Angeles Sparks), who joined Charles on the 2014 gold medal winning USA World Cup Team will also offer veteran leadership.
Including Williams, the remaining 12 finalists for the USA World Cup Team who will compete against New York Liberty guard Kia Nurse and Canada are: Layshia Clarendon (Connecticut Sun), Napheesa Collier (University of Connecticut), Diamond DeShields (Chicago Sky), Stefanie Dolson (Chicago Sky), Allisha Gray (Dallas Wings), Sabrina Ionescu (University of Oregon), Kelsey Mitchell (Indiana Fever), Tiffany Mitchell (Indiana Fever), Kelsey Plum (Las Vegas Aces), Morgan Tuck (Connecticut Sun) and A’ja Wilson (Las Vegas Aces).
“We’re excited about the 14 that made it past the Columbia round and that we’ll add in Elizabeth Williams to the mix in New York,” said USA and University of South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley. “But, each round what we’re looking forward to is continuing to bond, to execute what we want to do on both sides of the ball and to keep getting better every day. Every day. We have an Olympian, World Cup gold medalists, WNBA All-Stars, and we’ve got some players who haven’t played at the USA National Team level. So, I’m looking forward to continuing to mesh everybody that we have on the roster as we move forward in this process of getting ready for the World Cup.”
The team will face Japan in its final domestic exhibition game on Sept. 10 (7 p.m. EDT) at the Charles E. Smith Center at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. After a day off, the team will have one final practice on Sept. 12 (10 a.m. EDT) at the Smith Center before departing for Europe.
Information on purchasing tickets for each of the exhibition games can be found at usab.com/WNTtickets.
Members of the USA National Team pool who advanced to the 2018 WNBA semifinals were not available for the beginning of the camp, but may be added at a later date. Those athletes include: Sue Bird (Seattle Storm); Elena Delle Donne (Washington Mystics); Brittney Griner (Phoenix Mercury); Tiffany Hayes (Atlanta Dream); Jewell Loyd (Seattle Storm); Breanna Stewart (Seattle Storm); and Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury).
Prior to arriving in Tenerife, Canary Islands, for the World Cup, the USA will play in a four-team, international tournament in Antibes, France, Sept. 15-17, against Canada, France and Senegal.
The final 12-member 2018 USA World Cup Team will be selected by the USA Women’s National Team Player Selection Committee prior to the start of the World Cup.
Hall of Famer Dawn Staley (South Carolina) is the USA National Team head coach through 2020. Assisting Staley through the World Cup are Dan Hughes (Seattle Storm), whose Seattle Storm advanced to the WNBA Finals and will join the team upon the conclusion of the Storm’s season, Cheryl Reeve (Minnesota Lynx) and Jennifer Rizzotti (George Washington).
As was the case over the past three quadrenniums, the 2018-20 USA National Team roster will be fluid. It is expected that the official, 12-member 2018 USA World Cup and 2020 U.S. Olympic teams, should the USA qualify to compete in Tokyo, will be comprised of players from the 2018-20 USA National Team.
USA Basketball Women’s National Team director Carol Callan chairs the USA Basketball Women’s National Team Player Selection Committee, which includes New York Liberty head coach, three-time Olympic and two-time World Cup gold medalist Katie Smith as the athlete representative; representing the WNBA is Connecticut Sun head coach Curt Miller and Los Angeles Sparks general manager Penny Toler; and University of Connecticut head coach Geno Auriemma, who coached USA teams to gold medals at the past two Olympics and FIBA World Cups, serves as a special advisor.
Tina Charles’ USA Basketball Experience
Charles was tabbed a 2009 USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year. She won gold medals at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, 2010 and 2014 FIBA World Cups, 2009 World University Games, 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship. She took home the Bronze Medal at the 2005 Youth Development Festival. Internationally, she earned gold at the 2009 UMMC Ekaterinburg International Invitational (gold). She was a part of the 2017-20 USA National Team that participated in the winter 2018 USA camp in Columbia, South Carolina. Charles accepted an invitation to participate in the 2017 USA Women’s National Team training camp Sept. 30-Oct. 2 in Santa Barbara, California, but was unable to attend the camp due to injury.
After playing for three USA junior teams from 2005-09, was invited to attend the USA National Team’s 2009 fall training camp and was later named to the 2010-12 USA National Team, one of just two collegiate athletes on the roster at the time. Since then, has captured a pair of FIBA World Championship gold medals and two Olympic gold medals. Charles helped the USA post a 19-2 record in exhibition games from 2009-16. She averaged a tournament fifth-best 7.4 rpg. in the 2012 Olympics.
Charles was the USA’s third-leading scorer (10.7 ppg.) and second-best rebounder (4.8 rpg.) at the 2010 FIBA World Championship, while playing just 16.4 minutes a game. She was a member of the 2009 USA Women’s World University Games Team that posted a 7-0 record and earned the gold medal in Belgrade, Serbia as well as a member of the 2006 U18 National Team that went 4-0 to win the gold medal; set a USA U18 all-time record for rebounding (9.5 rpg.).
She was also a member of the 2005 Youth Development Festival Red Team that finished 3-2 and earned the bronze medal.
USA Basketball Women’s National Team
Members of the USA Basketball Women’s National Team will compete in the 2018 FIBA World Cup and, if the USA qualifies, the 2020 Summer Olympic Games (July 24-Aug. 9 in Tokyo), as well as additional USA training camps and exhibition games.
The U.S. and Staley first will look to capture the title at the 2018 FIBA Women’s World Cup of Basketball, with an automatic berth to the 2020 Olympic Games being awarded to the gold medalist. Should the U.S. not finish with the gold medal in 2018, it would have two additional opportunities to qualify for the Olympics: the 2019 FIBA AmeriCup (dates and site TBD) and the 2020 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament (dates and site TBD).
FIBA World Cup of Basketball
Winners of back-to-back World Cup titles and four of the past five FIBA World Cups, the USA owns a record nine gold medals, one silver medal and two bronze medals in FIBA World Cup play, while compiling an all-time 103-21 record at the event. In 2014, the most recent World Cup, the U.S. took the gold medal, while Spain captured silver and Australia won bronze.
The USA will compete in preliminary round Group D and will play Senegal on Sept. 22, China on Sept. 23 and Latvia on Sept. 25.
Group A includes Canada, France, Greece and South Korea; Group B is comprised of Argentina, Australia, Nigeria and Turkey; while Group C features Belgium, Japan, Puerto Rico and Spain.
Following the preliminary round, teams will be seeded, and the top team from each group will earn an automatic berth to the quarterfinals, while the No. 2 and No. 3 teams from each group will advance to the Sept. 26 quarterfinals play-in round. From there, winners will compete in the Sept. 28-30 medal round.
About USA Basketball
Based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and chaired by retired Gen. Martin Dempsey, USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA national teams that compete in FIBA-sponsored five-on-five and 3×3 international competitions, as well as for some national competitions and for the development of youth basketball.
The USA Basketball Youth Development division is tasked with the development of youth basketball initiatives that address player development, coach education and safety, while promoting, growing, and elevating the game. USA Basketball is committed to providing youth throughout the country safe, fun and developmentally appropriate environments in which they can enjoy the game. Current USA Basketball youth initiatives include coach licensing and education; organization accreditation; coach academies; regional camps; youth clinics; open court programs; Women in the Game conferences; and the U.S. Open Basketball Championships.
Connect with USA Basketball at USAB.com
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