LEXINGTON, Ky. – Kentucky women’s basketball junior DeNesha Stallworth is one of 31 top student-athletes in the country who have accepted invitations to participate in the 2013 USA Basketball Women’s World University Games Team trials. Trials will take place May 16-19 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo., and the USA Basketball Junior National Team Committee issued the invitations.
Stallworth, a 6-foot-3 forward from Richmond, Calif., was a first-team All-Southeastern Conference selection by the league coaches in her first season with the Wildcats. She played two seasons at the University of California-Berkeley before transferring to UK and had an immediate impact on the UK Hoops team in her debut season. She helped lead the Wildcats to a school-record 30 wins and their school-record fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament, including third Elite Eight appearance in the last four years. She ranked second on the team in scoring (12.5 ppg), rebounding (6.0 rpg), blocks (52), field goal percentage (48.4) and field goals made (181) and ranked in the top 20 in SEC in scoring (16th), rebounding (19th), field goal percentage (4th) and blocks (5th). Her nine double-doubles were a team high. She will head into her senior season with 1,366 career points (438 at UK) and 663 career rebounds (209 at UK).
“We're fortunate that the World University Games age group allows for the development of our college-aged players and gives them an opportunity outside of the Olympics to gain international experience at the highest level," said committee chair Jim Foster, who has been a member of nine different USA Basketball coaching staffs. “We feel that this is a good mix of players to build a team that will represent USA Basketball well in Russia,”
The 2013 World University Games (WUGs) women’s basketball competition will be held July 8-15 in Kazan, Russia. Organized by the International University Sports Federation (FISU) and held every other year, the WUGs is a multi-sport competition open to men and women who are between the ages of 17 and 24 (born 01/01/89 through 12/31/95). The USA Basketball women’s team will be comprised of U.S. citizens who are currently enrolled in college and have remaining eligibility.
“The trials roster boasts some incredible talent,” said Sherri Coale, USA and University of Oklahoma head coach. “The challenge for the committee will be selecting the players who fit together best.
“First and foremost, the players must understand what an honor it is to be invited to participate in the trials. With that honor comes the expectation that they will compete and work in a manner commiserate with the legacy of USA basketball. In a relatively short amount of time we hope to ascertain not only individual strengths but also collective strengths so that we might put together a team capable of winning in a variety of ways while also representing our country in the best possible manner.”
“The trials themselves will be designed to reveals skill sets, decision making ability, basketball acumen and, just as importantly, a willingness to learn and accept roles.”
Accepting invitations to participate in the trials were: Danielle Ballard (Louisiana State University/ Memphis, Tenn.); Rachel Banham (University of Minnesota/Lakeville, Minn.); Crystal Bradford (Central Michigan University/Detroit, Mich.); Gennifer Brandon (University of California/Sylmar, Calif.); Cierra Burdick (University of Tennessee/Charlotte, N.C.); Hallie Christofferson (Iowa State University/Hamlin, Iowa); Aaryn Ellenberg (University of Oklahoma/Las Vegas, Nev.); Morgan Eye (University of Missouri/ Montrose, Mo.); ReShanda Gray (University of California/Los Angeles, Calif.); Sara Hammond (University of Louisville/Mt. Vernon, Ky.); Cassie Harberts (University of Southern California/San Clemente, Calif.); Isabelle Harrison (University of Tennessee/Nashville, Tenn.); Bria Hartley (University of Connecticut/North Babylon, N.Y.); Jordan Hooper (University of Nebraska/Alliance, Neb.); Brittany Hrynko (DePaul University/Philadelphia, Pa.); Briahanna Jackson (UCF/Tampa, Fla.); Betnijah Laney (Rutgers University/Clayton, Del.); Jasmine Lister (Vanderbilt University/Corona, Calif.); Tricia Liston (Duke University/River Forest, Ill.); Maggie Lucas (Penn State University/Narberth, Pa.); Tyaunna Marshall (Georgia Tech University/Upper Marlboro, Md.); Ariel Massengale (University of Tennessee/Bolingbrook, Ill.); Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (University of Connecticut/Anaheim Hills, Calif.); Amber Orrange (Stanford University/Houston, Texas); Haley Peters (Duke University/Red Bank, N.J.); Theresa Plaisance (Louisiana State University/New Orleans, La.); Shoni Schimmel (University of Louisville/Mission, Ore.); Meighan Simmons (University of Tennessee/Cibolo, Texas); Odyssey Sims (Baylor University/Irving, Texas); Bria Smith (University of Louisville/Massapequa, N.Y.); and DeNesha Stallworth (University of Kentucky/Richmond, Calif.).