The USA U19 women’s basketball team did it again.
This year, led by head coach Dawn Staley and a fresh group of new young faces, the 2015 USA Women’s Basketball U19 World Championship Team (7-0) used their size to their advantage to beat tournament host, Russia, 78-70 in a back and forth game in front of a packed gym Sunday night in Chekhov, Russia.
The USA U19 team recorded its sixth-straight and seventh overall FIBA U19 World Championship gold medal.
A’ja Wilson, who plays for Staley at South Carolina, earned MVP honors after scoring a USA U19 single-game record 30 points in the win. The 6-foot-5 center averaged 18.3 points per game throughout the tournament.
Joining Wilson on the five-team all-tournament team was University of Connecticut freshman Napheesa Collier. The incoming rookie from Incarnate Word Academy in O’Fallon, Mo. had a great all-around game with 10 points, 10 rebounds, and six steals.
Staley’s squad outscored their hosts 46-20 in the paint. Throughout the tournament, the squad averaged 49.1 points per game via post play, while limiting opponents to just 18.9 points near the basket.
In addition, the U.S. dominated the rebounding battle against all of its opponents throughout the tournament. They outrebounded Russia 48-35 in the gold medal game and finished the tournament averaging 56.9 rebounds to its opponents 35.3 a contest.
Team USA’s U19 record is now 73-12 dating back to the first worldwide tournament in 1985.
Staley’s USA Basketball coaching record is equally as impressive at 64-4. She became the first U.S. coach to both play in and coach a USA U19 World Championship Team.
The legendary player and coach tweeted shortly after the win showing her excitement with the rest of the championship crew.