Finch, Giordano, Jung Make Team For Women's World Championship

June 4, 2002

OKLAHOMA CITY - Arizona softball players Jennie Finch, NicoleGiordano and Lovieanne Jung have earned roster spots on the USA Women's National Teamthat will compete for an unprecedented fifth consecutive title at theISF Women's World Championship in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, July26-August 4.

Arizona coach Mike Candrea, recently named coach for the 2004Olympic team, will head the coaching staff. They'll join USA Team memberand two-time Olympic gold medallist Leah O'Brien-Amico, also a formerWildcat.

Finch completed her senior season this year and won the Honda SoftballAward for a second consecutive season. Jung was the Wildcats' leadinghitter in 2002 and will return in 2003 for her senior year. Giordanocompleted her four-year career in 2001 as one of the all-time top 10Wildcat hitters.

The were among a group of 57 of the nation's top female softball playersculled down to a 17-player roster for the World Championship throughparticipation in a tryout camp May 30-June 2 in Chula Vista, Calif. Thecompetition this summer is an early look at players who likely willcontend for spots on the 2004 U.S. Olympic team.

A younger Wildcat, junior-to-be catcher Mackenzie Vandergeest,was selected to the USA Softball Elite Team that will compete againstthe National Team in workouts and later participate in the Canada Cupinternational competition in Surrey, British Columbia, July 12-25.

Only six members of the gold medal team from the 2000 Olympic Gamesremain for the World Championship O'Brien-Amico, Laura Berg, LisaFernandez, Lori Harrigan, Stacey Nuveman and Michele Smith.

Other new members are Amanda Freed, Keira Goerl, Lyndsey Klein, NinaLindenberg, Jessica Mendoza, Tucsonan Tairia Mims, Jenny Topping andNatasha Watley.

Coaches include Candrea, Ken Eriksen of South Florida and John Rittmanof Stanford.

'I think this team is very talented and is a good mix of youngand experienced players,' said Candrea. 'I'm very excited to get theopportunity to work with a team that has a combination of both power andspeed.'

The 2002 ISF Women's World Championship serves as the major qualifierfor the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. The top five teams fromthe World Championship will qualify for Athens and will be seeded in theorder they finish. The USA has been the top seed in the past twoOlympics and looks to secure its third top seed during the WorldChampionship.

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