BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA - The NWBA High Performance Committee and team staff have selected the 12 athletes to represent the U.S. Men's Under 23 team at the IWBF U23 American's Zonal Qualifier. The IWBF U23 American's Qualifier will be held on January 10-15 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. At this event the U.S. Men’s U23 team must secure one of two sports available for the Americas Zone for the 2022 U23 International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) World Championships. The 12 athletes were selected from the pool of 20 athletes that remain active with the U.S. Men's U23 team and eligible for future selection to this team.
The Auburn Tigers are represented on the 12-man roster by Evan Heller of Wooster, Ohio, Jake Eastwood of Mill Creek, Washington, and Samuel Armas of Villa Rica, Georgia.
Representing The University of Alabama is Peter Berry of Houston, Texas and Shaun Doss of Hudsonville, Michigan. Berry was selected as an alternate for the U.S. U23 Men’s roster in 2017.
The University of Texas at Arlington adds to team roster with Bryce Cruz of Houston, Texas, and AJ Hummer of Waterloo, Indiana.
Talen Jourdan of Deerfield, Wisconsin, and Ryan Glatchak of Addison, Illinois, are representing the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Warhawks.
Among the other collegiate athletes selected are the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign’s Gabe DenBraber of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Rounding out the names of the 12-man roster are a pair of high school athletes. Collin Lancaster of Dacula, Georgia, who plays for the Blaze Sports Jr. Hawks Varsity team, as well as Tim Houston of Ponte Vedra, Florida, who will be playing this season for the Brooks Bullsharks and Ballers in the NWBA’s Junior (Varsity) and Adult Division II.
The remaining eligible athletes in the pool, though not selected to the roster for this event, are: Riley Blee of Overland Park, Kansas, Spencer Kimbro of Moses Lake, Luke Robinson of Everett, Washington, Washington, Carrington Marendes of Woodville, Texas, Aaron Berry of Houston, Texas, Joe Rafter of West Chester, Pennsylvania, Jon McNamara of Champaign, Illinois, and Michael Seo of Escondido, California.
The staff for the U.S. U23 Men's team is head coach Ford Burttram of Pensacola, Florida, assistant coach Jacob Counts of Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky, assistant coach Doug Garner of Arlington, Texas, team leader Preston Howell of Belmont, North Carolina, and team medical staff David Becker of Matthews, North Carolina.
If a spot is secured at the IWBF U23 America's Zonal Qualifier, Team USA will plan to compete at the 2022 U23 IWBF Men’s World Championships that take place between 27 May – 4 June 2022 at the Chiba Port Arena in Chiba, Japan.
The U.S. U23 Men’s wheelchair basketball program is an international development team that serves as NWBA pipeline to the U.S. Men’s National Team. This program provides elite youth athletes the opportunity to compete at the international level. Team USA has medaled in four of the six U23 World Championships, having won gold in 2005 and 2009. The United States did not participate in 2013 and placed eighth in 2017.