BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA - The NWBA High Performance Committee and U.S. Men's Under 23 Team staff have selected the 12 athletes to represent Team USA at the 2022 International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) Men's Under 23 (U23) World Championship. on September 7-16 in Phuket, Thailand. The final roster selection comes at the conclusion of a four day camp, July 21-24, held at University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, AL. The U.S. Men's Under 23 Team previously qualified for the IWBF Men's U23 World Championship by winning gold at the IWBF Americas U23 Qualification Tournament that was held March 5-13 in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico (see below for recap).
U.S. Men's U23 head coach Ford Burttram comments on the selection camp, "It was a very competitive camp and all the players poured their heart and soul into competing. We are proud of all 20 players for their effort." Burttram adds thoughts on final roster, "The staff had to make some tough decisions and are proud of the team we have selected for World Championship."
The roster includes seven athletes that competed on the U.S. squad at the IWBF Americas U23 Qualification Tournament in March. The roster also includes two athletes from the U.S. Men's Senior National Team that recently won a gold medal at the 2022 IWBF Americas Cup n Sao Paulo, Brazil on July 9-19, 2022. It is evident that the roster has a strong foundation of athletes with recent success in international competition, and athletes that look to make the most of their first opportunity playing for Team USA.
Peter Berry of Houston, Texas, has been named to his third U.S. roster in 2022. Berry was a member of the U.S. Men's U23 in March and most recently a member of the gold medal winning U.S. Men's Senior National Team at IWBF Americas Cup. Berry was a key offensive contributor and facilitator to the U.S. Men's U23 team in March, which included averaging 13.3 points per game during the preliminary rounds.
Talen Jourdan of Deerfield, Wisconsin, has earned his way back on to the U23 roster that he was a part of for the IWBF Americas U23 Qualification Tournament. Jourdan recently logged 15.1 minutes of playing time per game for the U.S. Men's Senior National Team at the IWBF Americas Cup. Jourdan hopes to add to his 2022 gold medal count of two at U23 Worlds.
College teammates Luke Robinson of Everett, Washington, and Samuel Armas of Villa Rica, Georgia, return to the U.S. Men's U23 roster after their gold medal performance in March. Armas was the leading scorer for the U.S. squad in March averaging 16.7 points per game and total of 60 points for the tournament. The duo play at Auburn University in the Intercollegiate Division of the NWBA.
The final roster includes the following athletes that will be wearing Team USA for the first-time: Preston Howell IV, Belmont, North Carolina, Carrington Marendes of Woodville, Texas, and Aaron Berry of Houston, Texas. Marendes and A. Berry were selected as alternates in the previous U.S. Men's U23 Team roster. Howell was recently named Most Valuable Player for Adult Division II during the 2022 NWBA National Championship Series.
Shaun Doss of Hudsonville, Michigan, recaptured a roster spot for the U23 men. Doss won a gold medal with the U23 Men's team in March. Doss played college ball along side the P. Berry and A. Berry at the University of Alabama.
Another returning member of the squad in March is Gabe DenBraber of Grand Rapids, Michigan. DenBraber played collegiately at University of Illinois-Champaign.
Tim Houston of Ponte Vedra, Florida, returns to the U.S. Men's U23 roster. Houston was the sole team member to have multiple (2) games with +20 points at the IWBF Americas U23 Qualification Tournament.
Ryan Glatchak of Addison, Illinois, looks to hit the floor for the first time with the U.S. Men's U23 Team. Glatchak most recently finished his senior season playing along side Jourdan at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Jake Eastwood of Mill Creek, Washington, makes his first U.S. Men's final roster. Eastwood just finished his freshman year playing along side Robinson and Armas at Auburn University. Robinson and Eastwood played together during high school on a team in the NWBA's Junior Division.
The staff for the U.S. Men's U23 Team is head coach Ford Burttram of Pensacola, Florida, assistant coach Jacob Counts of Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky, team leader Preston Howell III of Belmont, North Carolina, and team medical staff David Becker of Matthews, North Carolina.
The IWBF has conducted the draw to determine group play during the 2022 IWBF Men's U23 World Championship. More information on the schedule, livestream and other information will be provided when available.
Information currently is available at https://iwbf.org/event/iwbf-mens-u23-world-championship/.
The IWBF Men’s U23 World Championship (click link for past results) is normally held every four years with 12 countries participating. The upcoming championship will be the seventh edition of the event and the first time it will be held in Asia. The previous championship took place in 2017 (Toronto, Canada), where Great Britain won gold.
The U.S. Men’s Under 23 Team 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 IWBF Men's U23 World Championships, having won gold in 2005 and 2009. The U.S. Men's Under 23 Team did not participate in 2013 and placed eighth in 2017.