Ogwumike sisters are finalists for USA Olympic hoop team


Former Stanford All-American sisters Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike were named as two of 25 finalists for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women's Basketball Team, USA Basketball announced Monday.

The 25 finalists were chosen by the USA Basketball Women's National Team Player Selection Committee, which will select the official 12-member U.S. Olympic Team later this year.

The USA Basketball Women's National Team will conduct a training camp Feb. 21-23 at the University of Connecticut. Athletes taking part in the mini-camp, which is expected to be the final training before the 2016 U.S. Olympic Women's Basketball Team is selected, will be announced at a later date and will come from the pool of finalists.

Chiney Ogwumike, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 WNBA Draft and 2014 WNBA Rookie of the Year, missed the 2015 WNBA campaign while recovering from knee surgery. Last season she led all rookies in rebounding (8.5 rpg) and double-doubles (13), ranked second in scoring (15.5 ppg), and third in steals (1.2 spg) for the Connecticut Sun.

A three-time WNBA All-Star, Nneka Ogwumike averaged 16.5 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 23 regular-season outings in 2015. She scored 11.7 points and grabbed 4.3 rebounds in the Los Angeles Sparks' in its three-game playoff series with the Minnesota Lynx in September. The 2012 WNBA Rookie of the Year and 2014 All-WNBA Second Team honoree owns career regular-season averages of 15.1 points on 53.6 percent shooting along with 7.4 rebounds.

Nneka helped the United States to the gold at the 2014 FIBA World Championships, becoming the fourth Stanford player to win World Championship gold, joining Jayne Appel (2010), Jennifer Azzi (1998 and 1990) and Sonja Henning (1990).

A newcomer to the women's senior national team, the elder Ogwumike averaged 7.5 points and 4.8 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per contest. She had her best performance at the event in a preliminary-round meeting with Angola, scoring 18 points on 7-of-8 shooting and grabbing 10 rebounds as the United States won by a record 75 points.

Nneka also won gold medals at the 2011 World University Games, 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship and 2008 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.

Chiney, who was a finalist for the 2014 USA World Championship Team, has won three gold medals playing for USA Basketball, capturing titles at the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, 2011 World University Games and in the inaugural FIBA 3x3 World Championship in 2012.

Azzi and Katy Steding were members of the gold medal winning 1996 U.S. Olympic Team coached by Tara VanDerveer. In 2008, Clare Bodensteiner and then-Cardinal senior Jillian Harmon represented New Zealand at the Olympic Games in Beijing.

— Stanford Athletics

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Like this comment
Posted by dennis
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jan 26, 2016 at 6:23 pm

Great news, and congratulations to two beautiful and talented athletes from the best university in the world.

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