USA U19 Team Improves to 2-0 With 101-60 Win over China

VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM Monica Wright (photo by USA Basketball)
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM
Monica Wright (photo by USA Basketball)
VIRGINIASPORTSDOTCOM

July 28, 2007

BRATISLAVA, Slovakia - Virginia's Monica Wright (Woodbridge, Va.) helped the USA Basketball U19 World Championship Team to a 101-60 blowout win over China in the second game of the pool play at the 2007 World Championships in Slovakia.

The rising sophomore had seven points, an assist, and a steal in 19 minutes of action.

July 27
USA 101, China 60

Led by five players in double figures, the USA Women's U19 World Championship Team improved to 2-0 with a 101-60 blowout of China (1-1) Friday in its second contest of the 2007 U19 World Championship in Bratislava, Slovakia.

"I was totally pleased with our metal preparedness tonight," said USA U19 and DePaul University (Ill.) head coach Doug Bruno. "We came ready to play against a tough opponent, and we had tremendous energy to start the game."

Incoming Duke freshman Krystal Thomas (The First Academy / Orlando, Fla.) recorded her second double-double in as many nights, tallying a game high 17 points and collecting 11 rebounds.

"Our success is just coming from hard work," Krystal Thomas said. "I'm still focusing on catching the ball with two hands and making good decisions, and all the rest comes from that.

"Tonight we brought the same intensity and focus, but we applied it to a much stronger opponent. So now we know that playing a great team or a lesser team, we can always play well and still win by big margins."

After a comparably modest 25-14 lead in the first period, the USA women allowed China just seven points during the second quarter, while seven Americans combined for 21 points during the 10-minute span, and the U.S. lead was 46-21 at halftime.

"There was a point in time when we held about a 12-point lead in the first half, and we could have let China continue to play with us," Bruno said. "But we really worked to keep them down, and we did a good job of understanding the concept of winning no matter your opponent. We really seized that opportunity, and that will really help us as we move forward to tougher and tougher competition."

China continued to fight, but its comeback hopes were in vain as the USA completely controlled the interior, out-rebounding China 68-40, including 25 offensive rebounds. Allyssa DeHaan (Michigan State / Grandville, Mich.) contributed four of the USA's eight blocked shots, while adding six points and five rebounds.

"We have a lot of very, very talented, big players," Bruno said. "We have six post players who are all the complete package, and it's hard as a coach to get all of them the time they deserve. Finding a role for everyone is still a work in progress."

Maya Moore (Collins Hill H.S. / Lawrenceville, Ga.) added 12 points and seven rebounds; Jantel Lavender (Cleveland Central Catholic H.S. / Cleveland, Ohio) contributed 11 points and seven rebounds; and Kayla Pedersen (Red Mountain H.S. / Fountain Hills, Ariz.) and Italee Lucas (Centennial H.S. / Las Vegas, Nev.) scored 10 points each. Vicki Baugh (Sacramento H.S. / Sacramento, Calif.) and Krystal Thomas each grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds.

The USA will conclude preliminary round play on July 28 against Lithuania. The second round will be contested July 30-Aug.1, the quarterfinals are slated for Aug. 3, semifinals will be held Aug. 4 and the gold medal will be contested July 5.

For complete USA Basketball release, visit: www.USABasketball.com.