Walz, USA Women Draw Group A for FIBA Americas U18 Championship

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 10, 2018) – University of Louisville women’s basketball head coach Jeff Walz and the 2018 USA Basketball Women’s U18 National Team will compete in Group A, along with Argentina, Chile and Puerto Rico in the 2018 FIBA Americas Championship that will be played Aug. 1-7 in Mexico City. Group B includes Canada, Colombia, El Salvador and Mexico.

“We are looking forward to a great competition,” said Walz, USA U18 head coach. “Now that we know our preliminary round opponents, we are even more excited to get training camp started on July 20. We have a lot of preparation to do.”

After the conclusion of preliminary round play, which will be played Aug. 1-3, teams will be seeded for the Aug. 5 quarterfinals. The semifinals will be played on Aug. 6 and the finals on Aug. 7.

While the USA U18 women will be in the hunt for a remarkable ninth-straight gold medal, also on the line will be a qualifying berth into next summer’s FIBA U19 World Cup 2019, which will be awarded to the top four finishing teams.

The 2018 USA Women’s U18 National Team includes: Aijha Blackwell (Whitfield School/Berkeley, Mo.); Jenna Brown (The Lovett School/Smyrna, Ga.); Desiree Caldwell (Byron P. Steele II H.S./Cibolo, Texas); Maori Davenport (Charles Henderson H.S./Troy, Ala.); Nazahrah Hillmon-Baker (Gilmour Academy/Cleveland, Ohio); Rhyne Howard (Bradley Central H.S./Cleveland, Tenn.); Ashley Joens(Iowa City H.S./Iowa City, Iowa); Olivia Nelson-Ododa (Winder-Barrow H.S./Winder, Ga.); Anaya Peoples (Schlarman H.S./Danville, Ill.); Sedona Prince (Liberty Hill H.S./Liberty Hill, Texas); NaLyssa Smith (East Central H.S./Converse, Texas); and Christyn Williams (Central Arkansas Christian School/Little Rock, Ark.).

The USA’s assistant coaches are Natasha Adair, head coach at the University of Delaware, and Cori Close, head coach at UCLA.

The team members will return to Colorado Springs for training camp on July 20 and will train until departing for the competition on July 29.

USA women’s teams boast of a remarkable 53-2 overall record in U18/Junior qualifiers and have won gold in 1988, 2000, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016; while capturing silver medals in 1992 and 1996.

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.

Connect with USA Basketball USAB.com and on Facebook (USABasketball, USABYouth, Twitter (@usabasketball @USABYouth, @USAB3x3, Instagram (@USABasketball; @USABYouth) and YouTube (therealusabasketball).

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