ATLANTA DREAM’S ANGEL MCCOUGHTRY NAMED TO 2012 U.S. WOMEN’S OLYMPIC TEAM

-- USA Basketball Announces First 11 Players for Olympic Team –

ATLANTA, March 30, 2012—Atlanta Dream forward Angel McCoughtry was named to the 2012 U.S. Olympic Women’s Basketball Team, announced today by USA Basketball. The U.S. squad will compete for a fifth-consecutive Olympic gold medal in London this summer.

“This is my first Olympic experience and I’m excited about it,” said McCoughtry. “I don’t think there is a greater honor in sports. You dream about playing in the Olympics but honestly I never really thought I’d be here right now. To play with the best players in the world and represent your country at the highest level is such an honor. It’s a dream come true.”

McCoughtry, a 6-1 forward, has led the Dream to back-to-back Eastern Conference championships. She earned 2011 All-WNBA and WNBA All-Defensive first team honors and was also a 2011 WNBA All-Star selection in her third year as a pro. McCoughtry finished second in the league in scoring last season, averaging 21.6 points per game. The No. 1 draft pick in 2009, McCoughtry was the WNBA Rookie of the Year in her first season with the Dream.

McCoughtry is playing on the Olympic stage for the first time. She helped USA Basketball to gold at the 2010 FIBA World Championship, the 2009 UMMC Ekaterinburg International Invitational and the 2007 Pan American Games. McCoughtry was the team’s second leading scorer off the bench on the World Championship Team that posted a 9-0 record to capture the gold medal and qualify the U.S. for the 2012 Olympics.

“I think that group of Tina, Maya, Angel and Lindsay, they’re a fresh look at what USA Basketball has to offer,” said Head Coach Geno Auriemma. “They’re smart. They’re incredibly gifted athletes. They play at a real high level. Their athleticism and their energy is just unbelievable.”

McCoughtry is one of seven U.S. team members competing this weekend in Istanbul, Turkey for the 2012 EuroLeague title. She is a member of Fenerbache in Turkey.

The 11 players selected for the Olympic team are as follows: Seimone Augustus (Minnesota Lynx), Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Swin Cash (Chicago Sky), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Tina Charles (Connecticut Sun), Sylvia Fowles (Chicago Sky), Angel McCoughtry (Atlanta Dream), Maya Moore (Minnesota Lynx), Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury) and Lindsay Whalen (Minnesota Lynx).

The athletes were selected by the USA Basketball Women’s National Team Player Selection Committee, approved by the USA Basketball Board of Directors and are pending final approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee. One slot remains for the eventual 12-member U.S. squad and the final athlete will be selected at a later date.

Dream head coach Marynell Meadors was previously announced as an assistant coach on Auriemma’s staff. Four-time defending Olympic gold medalists, the U.S. will look to capture its fifth straight and seventh overall gold medal and extend its 33-game Olympic winning streak at the 2012 Olympic Summer Games in London. The Olympic women’s basketball competition will be held July 28-Aug. 11 in the Olympic Park Basketball Arena (preliminary round and quarterfinals) and North Greenwich Arena (semifinals and finals). For more information and competition schedule, visit www.USABasketball.com.

The Atlanta Dream tips off its fifth season this summer at Philips Arena as part of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), the world’s longest-running women’s professional sports league. The Dream, the defending two-time, back-to-back Eastern Conference Champion, will host a preseason game on May 5 against the Tulsa Shock at 2 p.m. The Dream opens its regular season home schedule on May 25 against the New York Liberty at 7:30 p.m. Season and group tickets are on sale now and individual tickets will be available for purchase in the spring. For more information, visit www.AtlantaDream.net or call (877) 977-7729.