Hackett Leads Italy To Bronze At U20 European Championships

July 20, 2007

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USC guard Daniel Hackett helped lead the Under-20 Italian national basketball team to a bronze medal at the 2007 U20 European Basketball Championships, concluded Sunday (July 15) with an 74-63 victory over Russia. It was the U20 Italian team's first medal at the European Championships since 1994.

Hackett averaged 9.1 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.0 assists and nearly two steals in the eight games. The soon-to-be USC sophomore scored four points in the third-place game and finished third in points for the Italians in the tournament.

Hackett will now be joining the Italian national team as one of 18 players selected to represent Italy at the European Championships. He was one of three players given three days off, but will resume practicing with the Italian national team on July 21. Italy will be holding its training camp through Aug. 4 and will eventual cut the national team roster down to 12.

The Italians will play in an international tournament from July 31-Aug. 4 with Austria, Australia, Croatia, Turkey and Serbia. Prior to that, they will play Turkey in a 'friendly' on July 29. Among the other players on the Italian team are Andrea Bargnani of the Toronto Raptors, Marco Belinelli of the Golden State Warriors and many of the players which were on the Italian team which beat Team USA in 2004 pre-Olympic competition.

Hackett averaged 5.3 points and 2.9 rebounds in 37 games, including 16 starts, as a freshman this past season for USC. He was second for the Trojans in assists with 103 and second in free throw shooting with a .792 percentage.

The 6-5 guard had one of his best games for the Trojans during its second-round, 87-68, victory over Kevin Durant and Texas in the NCAA Tournament, scoring 20 points on 9-of-14 shooting.

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