Former Xavier star selected to US 12-man roster for basketball qualifying games
NEW YORK (AP/WKRC) - Tournament MVP Jameel Warney and three other players who helped the U.S. win the AmeriCup gold medal will suit up for the Americans in their first two Basketball World Cup qualifying games.
The Americans will play Puerto Rico on Nov. 23 in Orlando, Florida, a game moved from Puerto Rico because of hurricane damage. The U.S. will host Mexico three nights later in Greensboro, North Carolina.
The U.S. is relying on G League players, with NBA players unavailable for the windows during the season. Besides Warney, who plays for the Texas Legends, Larry Drew II (Sioux Falls Skyforce), Reggie Hearn (Reno Bighorns) and Xavier Munford (Wisconsin Herd) played for Jeff Van Gundy when the Americans went 5-0 and won AmeriCup gold in September.
The rest of Van Gundy's roster chosen Tuesday for this month's games: Amile Jefferson and Elijah Millsap (Iowa Wolves); Markel Brown (Oklahoma City Blue); Jarell Eddie (Windy City Bulls); Kennedy Meeks (Raptors 905); Donald Sloan (Texas Legends); Travis Wear (South Bay Lakers), and Semaj Christon, who is a free agent. Christon, a Cincinnati native, played two years at Xavier and was only the second player in XU history to reach the 1,000-point plateau as a sophomore. He declared for the NBA Draft in 2014 and was selected by the Miami Heat in the second round and eventually traded to Oklahoma City. Christon played 64 games for the Thunder in 2016-17, averaging 2.9 points per game.
Under FIBA's new qualifying system, teams will play home-and-away games against opponents in their region to qualify for the 2019 World Cup in China. That tournament will then qualify seven teams for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.