The exhibition schedule for the 2014 USA Basketball Women’s National Team has been finalized. Prior to facing Canada in an exhibition game at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport Sept. 15, the team will participate in the USA Basketball Showcase – a Red-White intrasquad game – at Delaware’s Bob Carpenter Center Sept. 11 at 7 p.m. (ESPN2).
Tickets for the USA Basketball Showcase are now on sale and can be purchased through the Bob Carpenter Center box office, by phone at 302-831-2257 or online at ticketmaster.com. Tickets for the USA-Canada match-up are available through the Webster Bank Arena box office, by phone at 1-800-745-3000 and online at websterbankarena.com.
Members of the 2014-16 USA Basketball Women’s National Team that are not competing in the WNBA playoffs will begin training camp Sept. 8-10 at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Former UConn All-Americans Sue Bird, Tina Charles, Stefanie Dolson, Maya Moore and Diana Taurasi and current All-Americans Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Breanna Stewart are members of the 2014-16 USA Basketball Women’s National Team pool.
“This is going to be an excellent kick-off to our training, especially the Red-White game in Delaware,’’ 2013-16 USA National Team and UConn head coach Geno Auriemma said. “The USA Basketball Women’s National Team pool is extremely deep and anyone not playing in the WNBA Finals will be fighting for a spot on the USA World Championship Team. That is going to make for an incredibly competitive game. You know, most of our players say that USA National Team practices are oftentimes more competitive than any game they play and this is going to be a great opportunity for our fans to see just how hard these guys play every single day. Plus, there’s a lot at stake in terms of a roster spot, so even though it’s an intrasquad game, it’s going to be fun to watch.’’
The U.S. will also compete in the France International Tournament in the Stade Pierre de Coubertin in Paris Sept. 19-21. It will meet Australia Sept. 19, China Sept. 20 and France Sept. 21.
Finally, the U.S. will face the Czech Republic in Prague Sept. 23 before the start of the FIBA World Championship in Turkey Sept. 27 through Oct. 5.
“Once we leave the United States, we’ll have four more games to prepare for the FIBA World Championship,’’ Auriemma said. “These are going to be important to the team’s preparations, especially given our opponents. They will be four very difficult contests and I couldn’t be happier to be playing Australia, China, Czech Republic and France before we arrive in Istanbul. We played the Czechs in the last World Championship gold medal game and saw France in the Olympic gold medal game. Australia, they’re probably the best team in the world next to us and China is always a tough opponent. All of these games – from the Red-White exhibition in Delaware to the final exhibition in Prague – are going to help us get ready to defend gold in Istanbul.’’