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Dec. 10, 2015

For Immediate Release 9068718.jpeg

COLUMBIA, S.C. ââ’¬” Led by South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley and sophomore forward A’ja Wilson, the Women’s U19 FIBA World Championship was named 2015 USA Basketball Co-Team of the Year. The women share the award with the men’s team, both of which won World Championships.

“These two USA U19 teams represented the United States with tremendous sportsmanship and teamwork on their way to gold medals,” said Jim Tooley, USA Basketball CEO/Executive Director. “The FIBA U19 World Championships are extremely competitive tournaments that feature the best talent from around the world, including young professional players. The USA U19 teams played truly impressive basketball, and we are proud to celebrate their golden achievements.”

Averaging 18.16 years of age, the 2015 USA Basketball Women’s U19 World Championship team’s margin of victory was 32.1 points per game as it collected seven wins and the USA’s sixth-straight women’s U19 gold medal July 18-26 in Chekhov, Russia. In the preliminary round of the event, the USA beat Spain 72-57, China 88-62 and Egypt 104-41. The USA downed Argentina 89-39 in the round of 16, Canada 93-45 in the quarterfinals, Spain 80-65 in the semifinals and host Russia 78-70 in a hard-fought gold medal game.

“I thought we had quality human beings,” Staley said. “Each of them were great players, but when they put on that USA Basketball uniform, they played their roles. They all did a great job of playing some great basketball.”

The MVP of the tournament, Wilson scored a USA U19 women’s single-game record 30 points against Russia in the championship game and averaged a USA U19 women’s record 18.3 points. She set a U.S. women’s U19 single-game record for field goal attempts 921) and tied the amrk for field goals made (11) against Russia, and she became just the fourth USA athlete to participate in and claim two U19 gold medals after also winning gold at the 2013 FIBA U19 World Championships.

“We all brought something different to the team,” Wilson said. “There wasn’t one player on the court that was the same. That really helped us win, and that was the great part. We had great team chemistry that brought us together as well.”

The U.S. women led the 16-team field in points per game (86.3), scoring margin (+32.1), field goal percentage (.439), rebounding margin (+21.6) and assists (20.1). The team tied the USA women’s U19 single-game record with nine blocked shots against Egypt on July 21.