Williams to Attend USA Basketball Women's National Team Trials

May 3, 2001

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - University of Oregon women's basketball player Shaquala Williams accepted an invitation to the National Team Trials, the USA Basketball Women's Collegiate Committee announced Thursday.

Williams (Portland, Ore./Reynolds HS) joins 35 other top women's collegiate basketball players in the nation, including 13 who earned All-America accolades in 2001. Chaired by University of Texas Senior Associate Athletics Director Chris Plonsky, the Committee will select finalists for the 12-member 2001 USA Women's World University Games Team following the Trials which will be held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) at Colorado Springs May 18-21.

Williams, who missed last season after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee, earned 2000 Pac-10 Player of the Year honors after averaging 17.7 points and 4.4 assists per game as a sophomore. USA Basketball selected Williams as an alternate on the World University Games roster following her freshman year.

Six current and former Pac-10 players also were invited. Cori Enghusen (Stanford/Bothell, Wash.), Michelle Greco (UCLA), Andrea Lalum (Washington), Loree Payne (Washington), Felicia Ragland(Oregon State), and Lindsey Yamasaki (Stanford) all will be vying for a roster spot.

In all, 26 NCAA schools are represented, with eight ringing in with two athletes apiece (Baylor, Colorado, Louisiana Tech, Oklahoma, Stanford, Vanderbilt, Washington and Wisconsin), and seven conferences, with the ACC, Big 12 and Pac-10 leading the way with seven athletes represented apiece. In addition, two junior colleges are represented among the 36 athletes invited to the 2001 USA Basketball Women's National Team Trials.

Virginia coach Debbie Ryan will serve as head coach of the 2001 U.S. squad and she will be assisted by Iowa coach Lisa Bluder and East Carolina coach Dee Stokes. The final 12-member team will be named during the Aug. 6-14 training camp which will be held at the USOTC.

The World University Games, held every two years and organized by the International University Sports Federation, is a multi-sport competition open to men and women between the ages of 17 and 28 who are, or have been within the past year, a student at a college or university. This summer the World University Games will be held Aug. 22-Sept. 1 in Beijing, China.

The 2001 World University Games women's basketball competition, currently featuring squads from 20 countries, has been divided into four preliminary round pools. The United States has been placed in Pool B and will face Canada, Ireland, Japan and South Africa in the preliminary round.

The United States has been sending women's teams to the World University Games since 1973, and since then the World University Games has served as an important developmental event for the U.S.

-UO-
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