January 10, 2013 - Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) - Minnesota Lynx
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL - On the heels of gold-medal performances at the 2012 Olympic Games, as well as undefeated exhibition records leading up to London, USA Basketball today named its 2012 U.S. Men's and Women's Olympic/National Teams as co-recipients of the 2012 USA Basketball Team of the Year award. While the USA men stood atop the podium for a second-consecutive Olympic Games, the USA women captured an unprecedented fifth-straight Olympic gold medal.
Lynx stars Seimone Augustus, Maya Moore and Lindsay Whalen all represented Minnesota on the U.S. Women's Olympic/National Team, averaging a combined 24.8 points per game during the tournament. The Olympic gold medal was the second of Seimone Augustus' career, previously having won the gold during the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, while it was the first for both Moore and Whalen, who were making their Olympic debuts in London.
Moore made five starts for the team, averaging 9.0 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game on her way to becoming one of eight players to win a World Championship gold medal, Olympic gold medal, NCAA title and WNBA title. Augustus averaged 7.8 points and 2.5 rebounds per game, while Whalen averaged 8.0 points, 2.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game, including ranking seventh in the 12-team tournament in shooting percentage (.533).
"Winning a gold medal during an Olympic year, as far as USA Basketball is concerned, is the culmination of four years of hard work," said USA women's head coach Geno Auriemma (University of Connecticut). "So, for our men's and women's teams to be the team of the year is a reflection on the work USA Basketball does with all our partners. Every day, there are people working to make sure those four years end with a gold medal. I want to pass along congratulations to Coach K and the men's team. They are just a bunch of super guys, and it was an honor and a thrill to be in London and watch them perform."
This year's announcement marks the 17th time USA Basketball has presented the Team of the Year Award, which first was earned in 1996 by the historic USA Women's National/Olympic Team.
2012 U.S. Olympic/Women's National Team
The 2012 U.S. Olympic Women's Basketball Team wrapped up an 8-0 record to capture a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics held July 28 - Aug. 11 in London, England, and extended its Olympic winning streak to 41 games.
Led by Auriemma, the team included Lynx stars Seimone Augustus, Maya Moore and Lindsay Whalen. Joining the Lynx trio were Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Swin Cash (Chicago Sky), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Tina Charles (Connecticut Sun), Sylvia Fowles (Chicago Sky), Asjha Jones (Connecticut Sun), Angel McCoughtry (Atlanta Dream), Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks) and Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury). Auriemma was joined by assistant coaches Doug Bruno (DePaul University), Jennifer Gillom (Washington Mystics) and Marynell Meadors.
The USA topped teams by an average of 34.4 points per game during the Olympics and listed No. 1 in 15 of 19 major statistical categories among the 12-team field, including points averaged (90.6), field goal percentage (.484), rebounding margin (+17.2), blocked shots (41), assists (185), steals (84) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.67).
The squad recorded 2012 Olympic single-game highs for points scored (114), field goals made (52), field goals attempted (90), field goal percentage (.627), rebounds (62), assists (33), steals (15) and blocked shots (11).
The team also set all-time U.S. Olympic single-game records for points (tied), rebounds, field goals made, field goals attempted (tied), assists and blocked shots; as well as all-time U.S. Olympic competition records for field goals attempted (597), rebounds (404) and blocked shots (41).
As part of USA Basketball's Hoops for Troops program, Auriemma and members of the USA Women's National Team conducted a clinic for approximately 50 children of military members on July 14 at the D.C. Armory.