Danielle McCray Earns A Spot On USA Basketball's World University Games Team

June 22, 2009


USA Basketball today announced the official 12-member roster for the 2009 USA Women’s World University Games Team, with Kansas rising senior Danielle McCray nabbing one of the prestigious roster spots. The USA Women will compete for a gold medal at the 2009 World University Games, July 1-11 in Belgrade, Serbia.

“This is a really exciting moment for me,” said McCray, who was an honorable mention All-American following the 2008-09 season. “I have been working very hard on my game in all areas and to be named to a USA Basketball team is a dream come true.”

McCray earned First Team All-Big 12 honors in 2009 after leading Kansas to a 22-14 overall mark and an appearance in the 2009 WNIT title game. She ranked second on the Big 12 and eighth in the NCAA in scoring as she turned in 21.6 points per game as a junior. She recorded 20 or more points on 23 occasions and topped the 30-point mark six times. McCray also led KU in rebounding (7.7), steals (48), block (34), three-point field goals (81) and three-point field goal percentage (.426). She enters her senior season ranked ninth on the Jayhawk all-time scoring chart with 1,539 points.

In addition to McCray, the 2009 World University Games Team features three two-time USA Basketball gold medalists in Jantel Lavender (Ohio State / Cleveland, Ohio), Maya Moore (Connecticut / Lawrenceville, Ga.) and Kayla Pedersen (Stanford / Fountain Hills, Ariz.),

The remainder of the 2009 USA Women’s World University Games roster includes: Tina Charles (Connecticut / Jamaica, N.Y.); Alexis Gray-Lawson (California / Oakland, Calif.); Tiffany Hayes (Connecticut / Lakeland, Fla.); Ashley Houts (Georgia / Trenton, Ga.); Jacinta Monroe (Florida State / Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.); Ta’Shia Phillips (Xavier / Indianapolis, Ind.); Jeanette Pohlen (Stanford / Brea, Calif.); and Danielle Robinson (Oklahoma / San Jose, Calif.).

“I think that the committee has done a tremendous job of selecting this team,” said USA and Arizona State University head coach Charli Turner Thorne. “We have everything that we need to bring home a gold medal. Our perimeter and our post game are exceptional. I don’t think we have any kinks in our armor. Now it’s just a matter of becoming a team – really working with each other and learning our offenses and our defenses in a very short amount of time. I could not be more excited about the individuals I’m going to coach and the opportunity in front of us.”

Turner Thorne returns to the USA sideline after assisting the USA women to a gold medal at the 2007 FIBA U21 World Championship. She will be assisted by Suzy Merchant of Michigan State University and Julie Rousseau of Pepperdine University.

McCray is the fourth Jayhawk to participate in the World University Games as KU head coach Bonnie Henrickson was an assistant coach on the silver-medal winning 1999 World University Games Team and former Jayhawk great Lynette Woodard suited up for the 1979 World University Games Team that captured a gold medal. In addition, KU Head Team Physician Dr. Larry Magee, was the team physician for the 1995 World University Games Team.

“I could not be more thrilled for Danielle,” said Henrickson, who is entering her sixth season as the Jayhawk head coach. “I thoroughly enjoyed my experience with the World University Games and I know she will too. The experience she will gain will not only make her a better player, but it will enhance our whole team.”

The U.S. squad will continue training camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., through June 25, when the team departs for Belgrade, Serbia.

The team members were selected by the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee, chaired by Sue Donohoe, the NCAA Vice President for Division I Women’s Basketball, following four days of training for 15 finalists June 18-21.

The World University Games is organized by the International University Sports Federation and held every other year. The women’s basketball competition will take place July 1-11. Eligible athletes for the USA team must be currently enrolled in a college or university and have remaining NCAA athletic eligibility.