MAYAGUEZ, PUERTO RICO – Incoming Rutgers freshman Essence Carson (Paterson, NJ) scored nine points as the U.S. Women’s Basketball Junior National Team rolled to a 124-49 victory against Puerto Rico in the third game of the FIBA World Championship Qualifying Tournament Aug. 6 in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico.
Carson, a 5-11 guard, missed just one attempt (2-3 FG, 1-1 3FG, 4-4 FT) for her nine points, adding two rebounds and two steals in 16 minutes. The Americans again jumped out to a dominating lead, posting a 28-5 margin at the end of the first quarter.
In the U.S. team’s 128-43 victory against Argentina Aug. 4, Carson tied for the team lead with seven rebounds. She also scored eight points on 3-for-9 (.333) shooting, adding two assists a steal and a blocked shot in 23 minutes of game action. Against Bolivia Aug. 5, she had nine points in 18 minutes. A Parade, USA Today and Street & Smith’s All-American while playing at Eastside High School, she will begin her collegiate career “On the Banks” next month.
Carson’s involvement with the team, her first international appearance as a member of the USA Basketball program, marks the fifth straight year that Rutgers has been represented on the U.S. Junior National Team (Cappie Pondexter, 2000-2003).
The Americans, 3-0 in pool play, will face Brazil Aug. 7 in the semfinals. The top three teams will advance to the 2005 FIBA Junior World Championship, slated for next July in Tunisia.