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Lynx Guard Seimone Augustus named to 2006 World Championship Team

August 1, 2006 - Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) - Minnesota Lynx News Release

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL-The Minnesota Lynx and the USA Basketball Women's Senior National Team Committee today announced that Lynx rookie guard Seimone Augustus has been named to the 2006 USA Basketball Women's World Championship Team. The 15th FIBA World Championship is scheduled to be played Sept. 12-23 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Also named to the team on Tuesday were Yolanda Griffith (Sacramento Monarchs) and Alana Beard (Washington Mystics). The selections were made by the USA Basketball Women's Senior National Team Committee.

"It's always an honor to represent my country," said Augustus. "I've had a great time playing with Team USA the past couple of years and I look forward to going out in September and doing whatever I can so our team brings home another gold medal."

Earning the WNBA Player of the Week award in just the second week of her rookie campaign, Augustus quickly made a name for herself in the league. The consensus National Player of the Year during her junior and senior seasons at LSU, Augustus was named a reserve to the WNBA All-Star team and led the Western Conference All-Stars with 16 points. She is currently the WNBA's second leading scorer (22.5 ppg) and ranks 18th in field goal percentage (.466).

"The Committee believes that each player brings special skills to the team," said USA Women's Senior National Team Committee chair Reneé Brown, the WNBA Chief of Basketball Operations and Player Relations. "Seimone plays at both ends of the court, has a great sense of the game and competes at the highest level. These three athletes will unquestionably enhance our already talented roster as USA Basketball embarks on its quest to defend the gold medal and extend the gold medal streak that began with the 1996 U.S. Olympic Team."

Selected No. 1 in the 2006 WNBA Draft by the Minnesota Lynx, Augustus joined the 2006 USA Basketball Women's Senior National Team the day after her Louisiana State University squad fell in the 2006 NCAA Final Four semifinal in Boston. Following the Draft, Augustus rejoined the team in Canberra, Australia, for the final three games of the 2006 Opals World Challenge, won by the U.S., and averaged a USA sixth-best 8.3 ppg while contributing 3.7 rpg and shooting 57.1 percent (12 for 21 FGs) in her first senior-level competition.

The 2003 USA Basketball Female Athlete of the Year, Augustus has helped a pair of U.S. squads capture golds in international competitions. A member of the 2005 USA World University Games Team that earned the gold medal with a perfect 7-0 record in Izmir, Turkey, Augustus finished the 20-team tournament ranked eighth among all participants for scoring (14.2 ppg.) and third for field goal percentage (.615).

In her first foray into the international arena, and after trying out for and not making the 2002 USA Team, Augustus led the U.S. to the 2003 FIBA U21 World Championship gold medal in Sibenik, Croatia, and was named tournament MVP in the process. Starting all eight games and averaging a team best 10.6 ppg., Augustus was credited for a team second best 19 steals, while grabbing 3.8 rpg. Additionally, Augustus scored 18 points in the gold medal game against Brazil en route to her MVP and FIBA U21 World Championship All-Tournament Team honors.

Augustus joins an already star-studded roster that features three-time Olympic gold medalists Lisa Leslie (Los Angeles Sparks) and Sheryl Swoopes (Houston Comets), two-time Olympic gold medalist Katie Smith (Detroit Shock), 2000 Olympic gold medalist DeLisha Milton-Jones (Washington Mystics), and 2004 Olympic gold medalists Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury) and Tina Thompson (Houston Comets). The twelfth and final member of the squad will be announced later in the summer.

The team will be coached by Seattle Storm head coach Anne Donovan who will be assisted on the sidelines by Connecticut Sun head coach Mike Thibault and collegiate head coaches Gail Goestenkors of Duke University (N.C.) and Dawn Staley of Temple University (Pa.).

The United States is looking at the 2006 FIBA World Championship to continue building upon the success it has experienced over the last decade in the international arena. Since the 1996 Olympic Games, the USA Basketball Women's Senior National Team has posted five consecutive gold medals at the Olympics and FIBA World Championships. Not only have the American women finished on the top of the podium, they have posted an unblemished 42-0 record, an unparalleled streak over the past decade among U.S. women's traditional team sports. Additionally, the United States is No. 1 in the world in every age group after also claiming gold at the 2005 FIBA U19 World Championship and 2003 FIBA U21 World Championship.

The U.S. owns a record seven gold medals, one silver and one bronze at the World Championship, while compiling an 80-20 (.800 winning percentage) record, including a 19-0 winning streak that dates back to the 1994 bronze medal game.

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