May 5, 2000

Norman, Okla. - The University of Oklahoma sophomore guard LaNeishea Caufield has been invited on behalf of the USA Women's Basketball and Select Team Committee to participate in the 2000 R. William Jones Cup Team trials. Caufield is one of 45 players and one of five athletes from the Big 12 Conference to be invited to the May 17-22 trials held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

From the trials, a team of 12 players will be selected by the Select Team Committee to compete in the R. William Jones Cup held on July 16-20 in Taipei, Taiwan. The United States has collected eight gold, four silver and four bronze medals in 18 Jones Cup competitions and boasts a 110-22 overall record.

The 12-member U.S. squad will be announced on May 22 and will start training at the Olympic Training Center on July 3 through July 12 for the Jones Cup competition.

The team will reassemble on Aug. 29 in Honolulu, Hawaii, to begin training for the Sept. 3, game with the U.S. Olympic Team. This exhibition game will be aired on national television, ESPN 2, at 5 p.m. (EST).

"I'm excited about the opportunity to play against some of the best athletes in the country," said Caufield. "This will be a good challenge for me."

Caufield led Oklahoma in scoring, field goal percentage and steals during the NCAA Tournament. She averaged 23.7 points, shot 60.5 percent from the field and pocketed 2.0 steals per game. The Ada, Okla., native also ranked second on the team in rebounds (6.0) and free throw percentage (81.8) during postseason action.

For the season, she averaged 15.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.9 steals per game. She ranked first in Big 12 Conference games in thefts (3.44) and free throw percentage (.899) and seventh in scoring (16.1). In addition, Caufield was named to the Big 12 Conference second team and voted the team's defensive player of the year.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for LaNeishea to showcase her skills," said OU Head Coach Sherri Coale. "LaNeishea worked hard this past year and deserves a chance to play this summer. This not only will help her individually, but it will benefit our team greatly next season."

Last summer, Caufield was invited to the USA Women's Basketball World University Games trials.

Athletes competing in the trials will be evaluated by the Select Team Committee based on playing ability, versatility, previous USA Basketball experience and success, coachability, size, position, current playing status and success, availability, attitude and future potential.

The trials will also be a part of the Summer Development Camp, a camp to refine individual position skills and to learn international basketball strategy. The format features teaching sessions, a round robin team tournament and seminars designed to fully develop the total athlete. Traditionally, the Summer Development Camp is designed to prepare the elite, collegiate athlete for the international basketball competition and to learn what it takes to become an Olympian.