#Pac12Hoops: Jones, Prince to USA Basketball AmeriCup trials; Barnes an assistant coach

SAN FRANCISCO – STANFORD’s Haley Jones and OREGON’s Sedona Prince are two of 20 collegians who have accepted invites to the USA Basketball Women’s AmeriCup Team trials, which will be held at the University of South Carolina from April 18-21.

“The AmeriCup is a national level competition with some of the best players in the Americas,” said Jennifer Rizzotti, chair of the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee. “We need to bring the best players available and that’s who our committee has worked to identify. Because we are unable to bring WNBA players, we will rely on the best returning college players.”

ARIZONA’s Adia Barnes will also be one of head coach Dawn Staley’s two assistants for the 2021 AmeriCup, held June 11-19 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Ten nations from North, South and Central America and the Caribbean will participate, with the top four finishers advancing to one of four 2022 FIBA World Cup Qualifying Tournaments. The next FIBA Women’s World Cup will feature the world’s top 12 national teams, with 38 games to be played across 10 days from Sept. 22-Oct. 1, 2022 in Sydney, Australia.

“Obviously, this is a very talented group with good junior national team level USA Basketball experience, but they will learn quickly the difference when playing against pros. So, we’ll need to find the 12 players who are up to the challenge of helping us in our dual goal of claiming gold and advancing to the 2022 World Cup qualifying tournament.”

A native of Liberty Hill, Texas, Prince already has a history of success when wearing the red, white and blue. Prince won a gold medal with Team USA at the 2018 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, and she was a bronze medalist at the 2015 FIBA Americas U16 Championship and the 2016 FIBA U17 World Cup.

Prince averaged 10.4 points and 3.9 rebounds per game while shooting 54.5 percent from the floor for Oregon in 2020-21, her first active season as a collegiate after missing 2018-19 due to injury and sitting out 2019-20 because of NCAA transfer rules.

Jones won gold at the 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup. Jones’ sophomore season concluded with the Cardinal’s third national championship in program history, a 54-53 victory over Barnes’ Wildcats in the first title game to feature two Pac-12 teams. She poured in 17 points in the final against Arizona and averaged 13.2 points and a team-high 7.4 rebounds this season.

Prince averaged 10.4 points and 3.9 rebounds per game in 2020-21, her first active season as a collegian after missing 2018-19 due to injury and sitting out 2019-20 because of NCAA transfer rules. The 6-foot-7 center helped lead Oregon to its fourth consecutive Sweet Sixteen and matched a career-high with 22 points in the Ducks’ second-round win over Georgia.
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In her fifth season in charge, Barnes guided Arizona to the most successful season in program history. A WBCA Coach of the Year finalist and Naismith Coach of the Year semifinalist, in 2021 she became the 11th coach to both play and coach in the NCAA Tournament at their alma mater and just the fourth coach to lead their alma mater to the title game.

The Wildcats’ third consecutive 20-win season featured 13 Pac-12 victories. Arizona, which was projected to make the 2020 field before the event’s cancellation, hadn’t been to the NCAA Tournament since 2005 and became the first program to advance to the Final Four after missing out on the previous 10+ tournaments.

A WBCA Coach of the Year Finalist, Barnes helped Arizona become the first ever team to reach the National Championship after missing the previous 10+ tournaments. Prior to this season, Arizona hadn’t advanced past the Sweet 16.

Invitations were issued by the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee and USA Women’s Senior National Team Committee.

The USA has played in five previous FIBA AmeriCups and captured three gold medals and one silver. In the most recent AmeriCup in 2019, UCLA’s Jordin Canada averaged 7.2 points, 3.0 rebounds and a team-high 5.3 assists to lead the United States to gold and earned a spot on the all-tournament team.

In 2019, the United States beat Canada, 67-46, for AmeriCup gold, besting a Canadian roster which featured Pac-12 alumnae Quinn Dornstauder (ARIZONA STATE), Kim Gaucher [Smith] (UTAH), Ruth Hamblin (OREGON STATE) and Jamie Scott [Weisner] (OREGON STATE). OREGON STATE’s Ali Gibson also played for Puerto Rico, which finished fourth.