COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Texas A&M junior center La Toya Micheaux is one of 12 players selected to represent the United States as a member of the U.S. William Jones Cup Team which will compete on July 11-17 in Taipei, Taiwan.
Micheaux will be joined by an all-star collegiate cast comprised of Rachel Allison and Jhasmin Player of Baylor, Heather Ezell of Iowa State, Briann January of Arizona State, Sarah-Jo Lawrence of George Washington, Jackie McFarland of Colorado, Angie Nelp of Colorado State, Kendra Reed of Southern Mississippi, Leah Rush of Oklahoma, Brittanie Taylor-James of North Carolina A&T and Katie Vieth of Kentucky. Seven of the 12 participated in this year’s NCAA Tournament.
Last season, Micheaux led the nationally-ranked Aggies to their first-ever Big 12 Conference title en route to the team’s second consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. An All-Big 12 Defensive Team selection, she grabbed a team-leading 7.4 rebounds per game in 31 starts for the Aggies and finished ranked among the top 10 rebounders in the league as a sophomore.
Led by Texas A&M associate women’s basketball head coach Vic Schaefer in association with Athletes In Action, the U.S. will be one of seven countries participating in the single-round robin tournament along with two teams representing Chinese Taipei, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and Korea. This is the first year that the women’s Jones Cup team will be sponsored by AIA which is an associate member of USA Basketball. The team will train in College Station from July 1-7 and will depart for Taiwan on July 8.
“I am very excited about the young people we have selected for our team,” said Schaefer, who is entering his fifth season at his alma mater Texas A&M. “All of them come from great programs with well-coached teams. With their playing experience, they will be well-prepared for the competition we will face at the tournament.”
Schaefer was recommended for the job by Tracey Tarkington, Director of Athletes In Action USA Basketball. Tarkington, a former Division I women’s basketball coach, has known Schaefer for years. She approached him about the opportunity to coach, because of his strong Christian faith and his success as one of the top defensive minds in the coaching profession.
The tour to Taiwan is just one of many for Athletes in Action. Between May and August, hundreds of college student-athletes and AIA staff travel the world to play competitive games, run clinics and attend sports camps. Each opportunity is used to share the matchless love of Jesus Christ as well as to teach the athletes how to be lifetime ministers of the gospel.
“This is a very unique opportunity that I feel a calling for,” Schaefer said. “It is an opportunity of a lifetime to lead a group of young individuals in international competition and be examples and fisher of men for the Lord. Not only will our players experience growth in their game, but growth in their spiritual life. I felt like it was an opportunity I could not turn down.”
Those interested in contributing to the U.S. Jones Cup Team tour to Taiwan should make checks out to Athletes in Action or Campus Crusade for Christ and send donations to:
Athletes In Action Basketball Women’s Jones Cup
651 Taylor Drive
Xenia, OH 45385
2007 U.S. WILLIAM JONES CUP TEAM ROSTER
Name Height Position School Hometown
Rachel Allison 6-1 F Baylor Jonesboro, Ark.
Heather Ezell 5-9 G Iowa State Springfield, Mo.
Briann January 5-10 G Arizona State Spokane, Wash.
Sarah-Jo Lawrence 5-11 G George Washington Rhoadesville, Va.
Jackie McFarland 6-3 F Colorado Derby, Kan.
La Toya Micheaux 6-3 C Texas A&M Missouri City, Texas
Angie (Gorton) Nelp 6-0 F Colorado State Canadian, Okla.
Jhasmin Player 5-10 G Baylor Bay City, Texas
Kendra Reed 5-10 G Southern Mississippi Bay St. Louis, Miss.
Leah Rush 6-1 F Oklahoma Amarillo, Texas
Brittanie Taylor-James 6-0 G North Carolina A&T Evanston, Ill.
Katie Vieth 6-3 C Kentucky Covington, Ky.
Team Director: Shannon Kaney (Athletes In Action)
Head Coach: Vic Schaefer (Texas A&M)
Team Chaplin: Tracey Tarkington (Athletes In Action)
Assistant Chaplin: Katie Rollins (Lipscomb)
Athletic Trainer: Chalisa Fonza (Ohio State)
Strength Coach: Jennifer Jones (Texas A&M)
Team Doctor: Dr. Carl Weidenbach (Texas A&M)
Team Managers: Jennifer Roberts, Allyson Roberts and Kelcie Morgan