June 27, 2010

Team USA wins the gold

The expectations for the USA Women’s U18 National Team in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship were great. So were the results.

With an 81-38 victory over Brazil (3-2), the USA finished 5-0 in the tournament and won the gold medal against the top 18-and-under international competition in the FIBA Americas zone, including Central, North and South America.

Also, as one of the top four finishing teams in this year’s FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women, the USA earned a berth in the 2011 FIBA U19 World Championships next summer in Chile.

Chiney said, “It feels remarkable, unbelievable, like our hard work was finally enough for what it took to be here right now. So it’s really awesome. We were here for, what, 20 days? And we had a goal. We had a mission, and we attained it. It’s a moment that I’ll always remember.”

This is the fifth consecutive undefeated run for the gold in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship For Women by a USA team with at least one Stanford player on the roster:

  • 2000: Nicole Powell. Nicole led Team USA in rebounding with 6.4 per game and averaged 8.2 points.
  • 2004: Candice Wiggins. Candice averaged 15.2 points and 4.8 rebounds. She led the team in steals with 4 per game.
  • 2006: Jayne Appel and Kayla Pedersen. Jayne averaged 7.0 points and 9.0 rebounds. Kayla averaged 6.3 points and 7.0 rebounds.
  • 2008: Nneka Ogwumike, Sarah Boothe and Joslyn Tinkle (who was still in high school). Nneka led Team USA in scoring (12.6 points per game) and rebounding (8 per game). Sarah averaged 6.2 points and 3.6 rebounds. Joslyn averaged 7.2 points and 5.8 rebounds.
  • 2010: Chiney Ogwumike. Chiney led Team USA in scoring (13.2 points per game) and rebounding ( 7.4 per game)

Here's the game report from USA Basketball with links to stats, quotes and photos.

June 26, 2010

Team USA rolls on

Another quick start and strong finish pushed Team USA within one win of its ultimate goal. They defeated Chile 98-28 in their medal semifinal game.

The win puts the USA in the gold medal game against Brazil, a 50-49 winner over Canada in the other medal semfinal, at 5:45 p.m. tomorrow.

For the third time in this competition, Chiney led the USA in scoring with 17 points.

Here's the game report from USA Basketball with links to stats, quotes and photos.

June 25, 2010

Team USA sweeps preliminary round

Team USA defeated Puerto Rico 108-44 tonight in the third game of the preliminary round of the FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women.

Chiney was not the top scorer this time. Eight of the USA players scored in double digits, and Chiney had "only" ten points.

The medal rounds start tomorrow. USA plays Chile in one semifinal game and Canada plays Brazil in the other.

This tournament has not been much of a challenge for Team USA, and the medal rounds are not likely to be either. But, as Chiney said after the first game, "It's never boring when you're representing your country."

Read more:

Stanford receives NCAA grant to promote women's basketball

Stanford has been selected by the NCAA as one of 12 institutions and two conferences to receive a women's basketball grant for the 2010-11 season as part of the NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Grant Program to increase awareness, exposure and attendance.

Stanford Women's Basketball will receive $50,000 from the NCAA to implement a literacy and creative writing program for 3rd-5th graders in the Bay Area for the 2010-11 school year.

This program, titled “Where Are They Now? Where Are You Going?”, will connect Stanford’s Women’s Basketball alumni as role models and inspirations to the children of the Bay Area Community. Through this program, students will become characters in Stanford-branded workbooks and will use their creative writing skills to personalize each story.

Each book will feature a core value of Stanford Women's Basketball, such as determination, hard work, etc. The stories will revolve around true stories from and about Stanford alumni. Each book will be presented in a different format. For example, book one may present the beginning and middle of the story , with the ending left up to the student’s imagination, while book two may present the end of the story and require students to create the beginning and middle. The books will be available both in print and online.

Upon the completion of each workbook, students will submit their stories to their teachers to select a winner. All participants will be given a voucher to attend a Stanford Women’s Basketball game, at which the winners will be acknowledged.

The goal for “Where Are They Now? Where Are You Going?” is to have significant academic results, as well as use Stanford Women’s Basketball to inspire children toward what they can accomplish in the future.

Read more about the NCAA Grant Program.

June 24, 2010

USA cruises past Brazil

Team USA's game against Brazil today reads much like yesterday's against Argentina.

USA won 89-46.

It was a team effort, with all members playing at least 12 minutes, none more than 24.

Chiney again led the team in points (15) and rebounds (7). She also had two assists, two blocks and a steal — all this in 16 minutes of play. She increased her field goal percentage to 78%.

Here is the game report from USA Basketball with links to stats and quotes.

In their last preliminary round game tomorrow, Team USA plays Puerto Rico who has already lost to Brazil and Argentina.

Chiney is the voice of Team USA

By Lindsay Schnell, ESPN:

If there's one thing you should know about the U18 USA team it's this: They are led by Ogwumike, the 6-foot-3, Stanford-bound forward who displays unusual energy for her size and position, someone who doesn't know how to take a play off because she probably never has. Read more...

June 23, 2010

USA overwhelms Argentina

The USA defeated Argentina 91-32 in the first of three preliminary rounds of the FIBA Americas U18 Championship For Women.

Each member of the USA team played at least 10 minutes, none more than 22. That's important, because they'll play five games in five days.

Chiney led the USA in points (15) and rebounds (12) and also had a block and a steal in just 15 minutes of play. She made 60% of her field goal attempts — impressive even against a weak team.

Chiney's opinion of the game, "I thought we did a lot of things well tonight and it was a good first game to get out on the court as a team officially and see what we can expect."

Here is the game report from USA Basketball with links to the box score and quotes.

Here is the tournament schedule and the results of the other three games that were played today.

Tomorrow the USA will play Brazil, who today defeated Puerto Rico 81-35.

June 22, 2010

U18 team experiences new heights

Today the 2010 USA Women's U18 Team rode the cog railway to the summit of Pikes Peak.

Tomorrow they begin their attempt to conquer the FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women with a game against Argentina. Fortunately they won't be playing at this altitude.

Here's a photo gallery of their excursion.

June 20, 2010

Chiney leads USA U18 to exhibition game victory

The USA Basketball U18 National Team defeated Canada 58-39 in an exhibition game at Colorado Springs today.

The USA coalesced as a team in the second half. Chiney, who led the USA with 15 points and 10 rebounds, said, "In the second half, I think we found that one thing that worked for us. We ran with it and started executing our offense. And we started looking for each other first instead of playing one-on-one, individual basketball."

The FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women begins on Wednesday.

Here is today's game report and box score from USA Basketball.

June 18, 2010

Chiney is MaxPreps female athlete of the year

For the second time in three years, an Ogwumike has been selected the national MaxPreps Female Athlete of the Year.

Chiney Ogwumike, an uber-talented basketball and volleyball star at Cy-Fair (Cypress, Texas) in the greater Houston area, follows in the footsteps of her sister Nneka ...

Make no mistake. Chiney is no follower. Her greatest trait, teammates and coaches say, is her remarkable ability to lead. Read more...

June 17, 2010

Tara loves being in Chautauqua

As she does every summer, Tara is vacationing at her home in Chautauqua.

In a talk at Jamestown Community College, she said that she loves being there so much that coaching the WNBA [in the summer] is out of the question, although coaching in the NBA would be kind of fun. She's trying to figure out a way to spend more time there, but that's in the future.

Read more in this report from the Jamestown Post-Journal.

June 15, 2010

Friends and opponents

Tara and Jennifer may not greet each other quite this amiably when they meet as opponents on December 22nd.

The Palo Alto Times reports unofficially that Stanford will play USF at War Memorial Auditorium on that date.

June 14, 2010

Chiney makes the USA U18 team

Chiney is a member of the final, 12-player 2010 USA Women’s U18 National Team. The USA women will compete in the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, June 23-27 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs.

Hopefully, she will help the USA win another gold medal in this event as her Stanford teammates Nneka and Joslyn did in 2008 and Kayla and Jayne did in 2006.

Announcement from USA Basketball

June 11, 2010

Chiney is finalist for USA Basketball U18 team

USA Basketball announced today that Chiney is one of 16 finalists competing for 12 spots on the USA Women's U18 National Team.

The final, 12-player team will be announced early next week after several additional practice sessions. When Chiney was asked what she needed to do to make the final cut, she said, "Keep working hard, do all the little things that matter. Do the things that the coaches say, be coachable and play hard."


Honors for Jeanette and Nneka

Congratulations to Jeanette and Nneka, who were honored at the Stanford Athletic Board Awards Luncheon.

Jeanette received the Bob Murphy Award, which is presented to the student-athlete whose unforgettable performance in an athletic contest secures a place in Stanford Athletics history. Her length-of-the-court sprint and layup in 4.4 seconds beat the final buzzer, lifting Stanford past Xavier 55-53 in the Sacramento Regional Final and into the NCAA Final Four. Later that evening, and for the next couple days, Pohlen's incredible shot ruled the airwaves and ran repeatedly on local and national highlight shows. The junior from Brea, Calif., played all 40 minutes in the win over Xavier, scoring five points, grabbing six rebounds and passing out four assists.

Nneka was one of three women who received the Conference Female Athlete of the Year Award, which is presented to a Stanford athlete who distinguishes herself in conference competition. Named to State Farm Coaches' All-America Team ... Associated Press All-America Second Team ... named Pac-10 Player of the Year, to All-Pac-10 Team, Pac-10 Tournament Most Outstanding Player and Sacramento Regional MVP and to All-Final Four Team ... finalist for Wade Trophy and John R. Wooden Award ... led Pac-10 in scoring (18.5 ppg) and shooting percentage (59.8) while finishing second in rebounding (9.9 rpg) ... posted team-leading 18 double-doubles while scoring in double figures in 35 of 38 games ... set Stanford single-season record with 376 rebounds, and became just the fourth Cardinal player to score 700 points in a season, finishing the year with 704 ... set new single-game school record with 23 rebounds against Oregon on Jan. 18 ... also hit the 30-point mark twice, highlighted by a career best 38 against Oklahoma at the Final Four on April 4 ... helped lead Stanford to its third straight Final Four and second national title game appearance in three years

Complete list of award winners

June 10, 2010

Is there anything Chiney can't do?

From the U18 team trials in Colorado Springs, USA Basketball reports Chiney's many accomplishments to-date and asks her about her strengths and weaknesses on the court, her close family, her future goals and who she’s cheering for in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Read it here.

Brian Gomez reports in the Colorado Springs Gazette that Chiney's improved ball-handling and better outside touch make her a favorite for the U.S. under-18 national team, which will be named Friday at Colorado Springs' Olympic Training Center and will reconvene in two weeks for the FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women. Read more here.

June 08, 2010

Summer basketball at Kezar

Are you ready for some basketball? The San Francisco Bay Area Pro-Am Summer Basketball League begins play weekend after next. It's not great basketball, but it's fun and it's free. It's a nice way to spend a few summer Saturday afternoons.

The season begins Saturday June 19th, continues on Sunday June 27th and then each Saturday afternoon in July until the Championship games in August.

Five Cardinal are on the Golden State roster — Sarah Boothe, Mikaela Ruef, Chiney Ogwumike, Sara James and Toni Kokenis.

Hopefully, Chiney and Sara will miss the first two games. They're trying out for the USA Basketball U18 team. If they make the final cut, they'll be playing in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship June 23-27.

The Stanford summer quarter begins June 21st, so Toni may not make the first game.

Here is the schedule and the rosters and a map (The games are played in Kezar Pavilion, which is at 755 Stanyan near Waller, east of the stadium).

June 01, 2010

Ranking Nneka on Stanford's list of alltime greats

By Jake Curtis:

Nneka Ogwumike presents a problem when determining her place on the list of Stanford’s alltime greatest women’s basketball players.

The difficulty with rating Ogwumike is obvious. On one hand, Ogwumike had one of the greatest seasons in Cardinal history in 2009-2010. Read more...