Seven Pac-10 Women's Basketball Players to Participate in USA Basketball Team Trials

May 6, 2009


Colorado Springs, Colo.-- USA Basketball unveiled a list of 29 of the nation's best basketball players who will compete for one of 12 roster spots on the 2009 USA Basketball Women's World University Games Team.  Seven Pac-10 players were invited to participate in the team trials including: Jayne Appel, Stanford; Doreena Campbell; UCLA; Alexis Gray-Lawson, California; Ify Ibekwe, Arizona; Kayla Pedersen, Stanford; Jeanette Pohlen, Stanford; and Natasha Vital, California.

Just five schools are sending multiple representatives to the trials, including California and Stanford.  Also with multiple attendees are Connecticut, North Carolina and Oklahoma.

Trials to select finalists for the 2009 USA Basketball Women's World University Games Team will be held May 14-17 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The selected finalists will return to Colorado Springs on June 18 for training camp.

The 2009 World University Games will be held July 1-11 in Belgrade, Serbia. Eligible USA Basketball athletes must currently be enrolled in a college or university and have remaining NCAA athletic eligibility.

After assisting the USA women to a gold medal at the 2007 FIBA U21 World Championship, Arizona State's Charli Turner Thorne returns to the USA sideline as head coach of the 2009 USA Basketball Women's World University Games Team, with Suzy Merchant of Michigan State University and Julie Rousseau of Pepperdine University serving as assistant coaches.

'Having previously coached against most of the players who have been selected and being very familiar with the tremendous accomplishments of the others, I can say without hesitation the committee did an excellent job of pulling together a collection of the best players in the country,' Turner Thorne said. 'I am very excited, as are Suzy (Merchant) and Julie (Rousseau), to coach this assemblage of elite young ladies.'

Appel and Pederson are both a two-time USA Basketball gold medalists.  The reigning Pac-10 Player of the Year, Appel averaged 4.8 ppg. and 5.0 rpg, helping the US to a 5-0 record and capturing the gold medal at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Appel, along with Pedersen, also won medaled at the 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.

In 2007, Pedersen helped the USA to a 9-0 record and a gold medal at the 2007 FIBA U19 World Championship in Bratislava, Slovakia where she averaged 2.8 ppg. and 3.2 rpg.  

USA Basketball women's teams have participated in 14 prior World University Games and collected a record six golds, six silvers and one bronze medal. Since 1973, the first year the USA women competed in the WUGs, the United States has compiled an 82-15 record. In 2005, the last year USA Basketball sent a team to the WUGs, the USA posted a 7-0 slate en route to the gold medal.


2009 USA Women's World University Games Team Trials Roster

Danielle Adams, G (Jefferson College)

Jayne Appel, F (Stanford)

Jessica Breland, F (North Carolina) 

Doreena Campbell, G (UCLA)

Tina Charles, C (Connecticut)

Alysha Clark, F (Middle Tennessee State)

Cetera DeGraffenreid, G (North Carolina)

Dawn Evans, G (James Madison)

Tyra Grant, G (Penn State)

Alexis Gray-Lawson, G (California)

Whitney Hand, G (Oklahoma)

Tiffany Hayes, G (Connecticut)

Allison Hightower, G/F (LSU)

Ashley Houts, G (Georgia)

Ify Ibekwe, F (Arizona)

Amy Jaeschke, F (Northwestern)

Jantel Lavender, C (Ohio State)

Danielle McCray, G/F (Kansas)

Jacinta Monroe, F/C (Florida State)

Maya Moore, F (Connecticut)

Kayla Pedersen, G/F (Stanford)

Ta'Shia Phillips, C (Xavier)

Jeanette Pohlen, G (Stanford)

Epiphanny Prince, G (Rutgers)

Alex Rack, G (Mississippi State)

Danielle Robinson, G (Oklahoma)

Carolyn Swords, C (Boston College)

Courtney Vandersloot, G (Gonzaga)

Natasha Vital, G (California)

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