Davenport takes home gold medal in Mexico

Published 7:24 pm Monday, August 13, 2018

Maori Davenport’s experience in Mexico City was worth its weight in gold as Team USA’s 18U squad took home a championship after knocking off Canada.

Davenport and Team USA took home the gold medal and it was an experience she will never forget.

“It’s hard to explain,” Davenport said. “It was a great feeling, but we felt like we had no choice. When we were in training camp they told us what the standard was and it was gold or nothing.”

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The U18 team entered the tournament having won eight straight gold medals.

“I think we handled that pressure well,” Davenport said.

Davenport trained with the team throughout the month of July and into August. She learned a lot while playing with some of the nation’s best, but there was one important thing she will take back to Charles Henderson.

“I definitely learned that you play for your team and not for yourself,” Davenport said.

Team USA went a perfect 6-0 in the tournament while outscoring their opponents 559-274. USA’s most lopsided win came against Chile when they won by 76, 115-39.

Davenport played a big part in her team’s success. She finished the tournament seventh on the team in scoring with 47 total points, good enough for 7.8 points per game. She had a team-high 16 blocked shots, while averaging seven rebounds per game.

For her efforts, Davenport was selected to the All-Tournament team.

“I was kind of surprised,” Davenport said. “We had 10 other players that could have won the award too.”

Davenport was one of the starting five in the final handful of games, including the championship against Canada.

“It was surprising,” Davenport said. “I wasn’t expecting that. I think I started four games in a row.”

Despite the strong statistics, Davenport was proud of another characteristic of her game that you won’t find on any stat sheet.

“I think I hustled,” Davenport said. “My favorite part of the game was the hustle, because it always caused something good to happen on offense.”

Davenport picked up a total of six assists during the tournament.

Davenport is now back at school and is preparing for her senior season with the Trojans, where she hopes she can go back to the state tournament and help bring the Trojans their second-straight championship.