Sylvia Fowles and Swin Cash named to the 2012 U.S. Women’s Olympic National Team

The first 11 members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Women’s Basketball Team were announced today by USA Basketball and features a trio of two-time Olympic gold medalists, four athletes who have each earned one Olympic gold medal and four newcomers to the Olympic stage. The well-balanced and talented core of the U.S. squad will compete for the USA’s fifth-consecutive Olympic gold medal in London this summer. 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.

Named to the Olympic team were Sylvia Fowles (Chicago Sky), Swin Cash (Chicago Sky), Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury), Seimone Augustus (Minnesota Lynx), Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks), Tina Charles (Connecticut Sun), Angel McCoughtry (Atlanta Dream), Maya Moore (Minnesota Lynx) and Lindsay Whalen (Minnesota Lynx).

Fowles was a member of the 2008 Olympic team that won the gold medal in Beijing, China. The 2008 team dominated their opponents on the court, winning by an average of 37.5 points per game. Fowles came off the bench in all eight games and averaged 17.9 points, 8.4 rebounds, and .9 blocks per game. The 2008 gold medal was the fourth gold medal in a row for the U.S. Women’s National Team which is the first time a women’s traditional team sport has claimed four consecutive gold medals. The win in the gold medal game over Australia marked the third straight time Team USA has beaten Australia for the gold.

This is Cash’s second stint with the U.S. Olympic Women’s National Team after she helped the U.S. bring home the gold medal in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece. The 2004 team went 8-0 on its way to the gold medal and won every game but one by double digits. Cash played in seven games for Team USA and averaged 6.3 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. The ’04 gold medal was the third straight gold medal for the U.S. Women and they finished the tournament first in almost every major statistical category. They finished first in, scoring offense (84 PPG), scoring defense (60.3 PPG), scoring margin (+28.8 PPG), field goal percentage (47%), rebounding offense (41.9 RPG), rebounding defense (24.1 RPG), rebounding margin (+17.8 RPG), and steals (13.4 SPG).

Team USA heads into the 2012 Olympic Games on a 33 game winning streak dating back to the 1992 bronze medal game against Cuba. Overall the U.S. Women’s National Team is 50-3 since they began competing in the Olympics in 1976 and has won six gold medals, one silver and bronze medal respectively. The only other countries besides the United States to win the gold medal are the former Soviet Union in 1976 and 1980 (the year the United States did not participate) and the Unified Team in 1992, which was comprised of members from the former USSR.

The 2012 Olympic Games will be held in London, England from July 27 through August 12, 2012. Seven countries have already qualified for the women’s basketball tournament - Great Britain, the United States, Angola, Brazil, China, Russia, and Australia. Five more countries will qualify via the 2012 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament, which will bring the total number of participating countries to 12.

The WNBA will break from July 14 through August 14 while the members of Team USA are competing. Join the Sky on July 13th as we host an Olympic send-off for Fowles and Cash when we take on the Connecticut Sun. Call 866.SKY.WNBA for more information and to purchase tickets for this game.