Seattle's Sue Bird highlights US women's world cup roster

Seattle's Sue Bird highlights US women's world cup roster

The players combine for 23 Olympic and World Cup gold medals with an overall 669-39 (.945) record in USA Basketball games played.

When the USA women's basketball team begins its run at the 2018 FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup this weekend, fans won't have to look far to find a player with a championship pedigree. It's her fourth World Cup team selection.

Wilson, the WNBA Rookie of the Year with Las Vegas this past season, is being reunited with US coach Dawn Staley, her college coach. We could have easily brought 15 players, but the roster has to be cut down to 12.

"I'm incredibly proud of A'ja for making the final roster of our World Cup team", Staley said in a statement. "So, we have a great mix of both, and we are looking forward to forging ahead, getting as much time together as possible before we start and as we continue throughout the tournament". "We had a good practice yesterday, where the four of us that just joined the team got to learn the plays and kind of get a feel for what we are doing".

Alongside her with those four Olympic titles is Taurasi.

The U.S. plays Senegal on Saturday, China on Sunday and Latvia on Tuesday in group play.

World Cup veterans Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner, Tina Charles and Nneka Ogwumike are also on the USA roster.

Held every four years, the FIBA World Cup is the world's largest women's basketball worldwide competition. The Phoenix Mercury guard is the WNBA's career points leader. The USA will play China on September 23 and Latvia on September 25. Following the preliminary round, the top three teams from each group will advance to the playoff round. The quarterfinals are Sept, 28; the semifinals September 29 and the finals September 30.

In all, the 12 members of the team have earned a combined 48 gold medals, two silver medals and three bronze medals in junior- and senior-level worldwide competitions, including 3×3. Staley is the head coach of Team USA and will lead the squad through the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. She's a four-time Olympic gold medalist, winning it every cycle since 2004. Stewart also is a multiple award victor, earning USA Female Athlete of the Year in 2011 and 2013, while Charles (2009) and Wilson (2015) round out the list.

Team USA also includes: Tina Charles (New York Liberty), Layshia Clarendon (Connecticut Sun), Elena Delle Donne (Washington Mystics), Brittney Griner (Phoenix Mercury), Nneka Ogwumike (Los Angeles Sparks), Morgan Tuck (Connecticut Sun) and A'ja Wilson (Las Vegas Aces). Bird and Taurasi also took home bronze from the 2006 World Cup.

Statue update. SC athletics director Ray Tanner said the university hopes to unveil Wilson's statue prior to the 2020-21 basketball season outside of Colonial Life Arena.

Assisting Staley through the World Cup are Dan Hughes (Seattle Storm), Cheryl Reeve (Minnesota Lynx) and Jennifer Rizzotti (George Washington). The veteran guard will try and help the Americans win a third straight FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup title and in the process her unprecedented fourth gold medal in the tournament.

Sue Bird looks on at the US women's basketball game against Spain at the Olympic Games Rio 2016 on August 8, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro. Combined, the USA players have 13 Olympic gold medals to their names.

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