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US women with Van Lith will begin Olympic 3×3 defense vs Germany

Jun 17, 2024, 4:02 PM

Hailey Van Lith US Olympics 3x3...

Hailey Van Lith of LSU gestures after hitting a 3-pointer against Colorado on Nov. 6, 2023. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

PARIS (AP) — The U.S. women will begin the defense of their Olympic 3×3 basketball title against Germany.

The 3×3 schedule and first-round matchups at the Paris Games were announced on Monday. La Concorde Square in the heart of Paris will stage the competition from July 30-Aug. 5.

WNBA player Cameron Brink and former LSU player Hailey Van Lith headline the United States squad.

WA native Hailey Van Lith makes US Olympics women’s 3×3 basketball team

A 22-year-old guard, Van Lith was a prep basketball superstar at Cashmere High School and has since gone on to be a high-profile college player, recently transferring to TCU.

Van Lith averaged 11.6 points and 3.6 assists in her only season at LSU, joining the NCAA defending champions for the 2023-24 season. She starred at Louisville her first three years, leading the Cardinals to the Final Four in 2022. Louisville lost in the Elite Eight last year before she decided to transfer to LSU.

Van Lith has experienced success in 3×3 for the U.S., winning a gold medal on the U18 team in 2019 and helping win gold at the FIBA 3×3 World Cup last year. The Paris Games is the second Olympics offering 3×3, after the event debuted in Tokyo in the 2021 Games.

“What I remember most is that every game is so unique,” Van Lith told the AP in April about 3×3. “The strategy from game to game is so different. You can’t specialize in one thing and make it as a player in 3 on 3. You have to be able to guard every position for at least a couple of seconds.”

The U.S. men’s team, led by former NBA player Jimmer Fredette, will start against Serbia, the Tokyo Games bronze medalist. This will be the first time the U.S. men compete in Olympic 3×3. The men’s defending champion, Latvia, will face Lithuania in their opener.

Basketball’s 3×3 version debuted in the 2021 Tokyo Games and is played on a half-court between two teams of three players each. The first team to score 21 points or the team with the most points after 10 minutes wins.

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