Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Lobo, 10 Others Picked for U.S. Women's Team

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Lobo, 10 Others Picked for U.S. Women's Team

Article excerpt

All Americans Rebecca Lobo and Nikki McCray were among 11 players selected Thursday for the national women's basketball team. They have the challenge of returning the United States to the top in the sport.

The team, to form the core of the 1996 U.S. Olympic team, was chosen after a week of tryouts that ended Wednesday night.

It includes both the old and new in women's basketball for this country internationally - from Olympic veterans Teresa Edwards and Katrina McClain to 1995 college All-Americans Lobo of Connecticut and McCray of Tennessee.

Recent college standouts Lisa Leslie (Southern Cal), Sheryl Swoopes (Texas Tech) and Dawn Staley (Virginia) also were picked for the team, along with Jennifer Azzi, Katy Steding, Ruthie Bolton and Carla McGhee. The roster was chosen from 16 finalists who had been gleaned from the 24 players who showed up for the tryouts. The final players cut were Shanda Berry, Val Whiting, Tari Phillips, Linda Godby and Edna Campbell.

"Once we got down to 20, it was difficult in that you can't make a wrong choice," said Colorado coach Ceal Barry, one of 13 members on the selection committee. "We all sat in there and said any one of these players could help us, but we have to choose who we feel would be the best choices and I think we have."

The committee tried to put together a team that was quick, versatile, had good ball handlers and could defend. It also needed role players, those who could be content just to help out wherever they were needed.

"The bottom line is we did not select an all-star team," committee chair Karen Stromme said. "We selected a team that we feel is going to be in the best position to win a gold medal in '96."

The team will be coached by Tara Vanderveer, who also will be the Olympic coach. Vanderveer is leaving her coaching job at Stanford for a year to run the team. …

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