Team USA’s Ionescu, Stewart Leading New York Liberty to 7-Game Win Streak

By Tate Hutchinson

On Saturday morning, the Team USA Women’s Basketball roster was announced for the upcoming 2024 Paris Olympics, with New York Liberty forward Breanna Stewart and guard Sabrina Ionescu chosen to lead the American team to their eighth straight gold medal. This marks the first Olympic experience for Ionescu, while Stewart looks to earn her third gold in Paris this summer after making the team in her rookie year.

Joining them on Team USA will be Napheesa Collier (F, Lynx), Kahleah Cooper (G/F, Mercury), Chelsea Gray (G, Aces), Brittney Griner (C, Mercury), Jewell Loyd (G, Storm), Kelsey Plum (G, Aces), Diana Taurasi (G, Mercury), Alyssa Thomas (F, Sun), A’ja Wilson (F/C, Aces), and  Jackie Young (G/F, Aces). Notable omissions from the roster include Dallas Wings G Arike Ogunbowale, one of the league’s most prolific scorers, as well as rookie sensation Caitlin Clark. Based on their incredible play so early into their careers, these players will hope to lead the USA as they host the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles.

On the day of the announcement, the Liberty were also preparing for their toughest test of the season thus far. Their Commissioner’s Cup matchup against the 9-0 Connecticut Sun would clinch them the Eastern Conference’s bid in the cup final. Unfazed by the pressure, Sabrina Ionescu nailed a tough jumper to give New York the lead in the fourth quarter and they never looked back.

The Liberty finished with a hard-fought 82-75 road win in Connecticut to knock off the league’s top team and will now host the Commissioner’s Cup title game. Alongside Ionescu’s 24-point performance, center Jonquel Jones dominated on both ends with 22 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, and a season-high 4 blocks. On Sunday, the Liberty extended their win streak to 7 with a 93-88 win over Ariel Atkins and the Mystics.

Their outstanding play in the in-season tournament with a 5-0 record and a tiebreaker over Connecticut has resulted in a $15,000 donation to the Liberty’s selected charity, Women Creating Change. The team has partnered with WCC to help advocate for reproductive rights and voting representation of diverse communities throughout NYC, led by women.

With the team heating up this month and now tied for the best record in the league, Ionescu and Stewart’s Liberty are poised for success yet again. The Liberty hope to raise the Commissioner’s Cup for the second consecutive year and continue their momentum to a championship run.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *