IZMIR, TURKEY – Rutgers’ Cappie Pondexter (Chicago, IL) and Team USA will begin play at the 2005 World University Games Aug. 10 in Izmir, Turkey.
The U.S. will face the Czech Republic Aug. 10, South Africa Aug. 11, China Aug. 12 and Poland Aug. 15 in preliminary play. The World University Games quarterfinals will be conducted Aug. 16, followed by the semifinals Aug. 17 and the championship game Aug. 19.
Pondexter and her 11 World University Games teammates have been practicing together since June 28. The team gathered in Colorado Springs, CO, for a week of preparation before making their way to Izmir Aug. 4 for additional training prior to the start of the World University Games.
Pondexter, who will be a fifth-year senior on the Scarlet Knight squad this fall, spent four straight summers (2000-2003) with the USA Basketball program as a member of the U.S. 20-and-Under National Team. She led the Americans to the gold medal at the 2003 FIBA World Championship For Young Women in Sibenik, Croatia, serving as the team co-captain and the starting point guard while averaging 5.3 points, 1.6 rebounds and 1.0 assist per game. Pondexter won a gold medal at the 2002 World Championship For Young Women Qualifying Tournament in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil, posting a tournament-best 6.5 assists-per-game average as the starting point guard and a team co-captain.
She tallied 8.8 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.5 steals per game and shot 51.9 (14-27) percent from the field and 62.5 (5-8) percent from three-point range at the 2002 qualifying tournament. As a member of the 2001 U.S. Junior National Team, the 5-9 guard won a bronze medal at the FIBA World Junior Championships in Prague, Czech Republic, and she also was a member of the 2000 U.S. Junior World Championship Qualifying Team that struck gold in Mardelplata, Argentina.
Pondexter was a candidate for three 2005 national player-of-the-year awards (Naismith, State Farm Wade Trophy, Wooden Women’s Award) as well as the Nancy Lieberman Award (top point guard) and Bayer Advantage Senior CLASS Award. Pondexter also was named to the 2004-2005 Associated Press (honorable mention), Full Court Press (third team) and Kodak/Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (honorable mention) All-America Teams, the Kodak/ WBCA All-Region 1 Team, the BIG EAST All-First Team and the BIG EAST All-Tournament Team, and was the NCAA Tournament Philadelphia Region’s Most Outstanding Player. She averaged 14.7 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game last season, posting 19 double-digit scoring efforts (seven 20+ points) in 27 appearances.
The World University Games, held every two years and organized by the International University Sports Federation (FISU), is a multi-sport competition open to men and women between the ages of 17 and 28 (born between January 1, 1977, and December 31, 1987), who are, or have been within the past year, a student at a college or university. A total of 21 teams will compete at the 2005 Women’s World University Games. The teams have been divided into four preliminary pools, three pools consisting of five teams and one pool consisting of six teams. The U.S. is in Pool B with China, Czech Republic, Poland and South Africa.
The USA women have enjoyed outstanding success in the World University Games and have earned 12 medals in 13 appearances, including five golds, six silvers and one bronze medal, and have compiled an overall record of 75-15 (.833) since beginning World University Games play in 1973. USA Basketball last sent a squad to the 2001 World University Games, where the U.S. ran off to a 7-1 record and clinched the gold medal in Beijing, China. USA Basketball did not send a team to the last World University Games in 2003.
Pondexter is one of two Scarlet Knights to play for USA Basketball this summer. Rising sophomore Essence Carson (Paterson, NJ) recently returned from Tunisia, where she won a gold medal at the 2005 FIBA Under-19 World Championship July 24.
2005 USA Basketball World University Games Roster
Seimone Augustus, LSU
Monique Currie, Duke
Jessica Davenport, Ohio State
Megan Duffy, Notre Dame
Candice Dupree, Temple
Sylvia Fowles, LSU
Erin Grant, Texas Tech
Brandie Hoskins, Ohio State
Cappie Pondexter, Rutgers
Liz Shimek, Michigan State
Brooke Smith, Stanford
Lisa Willis, UCLA
2005 World University Games Schedule
Wednesday, Aug. 10 USA vs. Czech Republic
Thursday, Aug. 11 USA vs. South Africa
Friday, Aug. 12 USA vs. China
Monday, Aug. 15 USA vs. Poland
Tuesday, Aug. 16 Quarterfinals
Wednesday, Aug. 17 Semifinals
Friday, Aug. 19 Championship game