COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO – The National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA) and the High Performance Committee are excited to announce the staff that will support Team USA at the 2023 IWBF Women’s U25 Wheelchair Basketball World Championship.
Current Alabama Women’s Wheelchair Basketball Head Coach, Ryan Hynes of Germantown, Wisconsin, will serve as head coach for the squad, marking his first head coaching assignment of a NWBA High Performance team. Hynes is currently an assistant coach for the U.S. Women’s team that will be competing in the upcoming IWBF World Championships in June.
Joining Hynes on the sidelines as assistant coaches are Jacob Counts of Covington, Kentucky, and Lauren Perry of Birmingham, Alabama. The other two team staff members are Kathryn Rougeau of Troy, Michigan, as team leader, and Alexandra Curry of Tuscaloosa, Alabama as medical staff.
The 2023 IWBF Women’s U25 Wheelchair Basketball World Championship is scheduled for October 3-9 in Bangkok, Thailand. The World Championship is set be the largest and will be returning to Thailand for a second consecutive time. Click here for more information. Please make sure to visit www.nwba.org and the NWBA on social media for updates on the team.
Hynes has served as Alabama’s head coach for the last seven seasons, leading the Tide to a NWBA Intercollegiate National Championship this season. No stranger to the sport, Hynes has played wheelchair basketball since 2005. Hynes was a two-time Intercollegiate Division All-American during his playing career at University of Alabama and was a part of the University of Alabama’s first national championship for their men’s team in 2013. Hynes has been a part of six NWBA National Championships as both a player and coach during his time at the University of Alabama. Hynes graduated with a degree in Elementary Education in 2014 and taught in the Tuscaloosa (AL) area for two years before getting into coaching. During his personal time Hynes loves hanging out with his wife, Caitlin, and his dog, Maddie. Hynes is a cancer survivor and a diehard Green Bay Packer's fan.
Counts is the head coach of the Cincinnati Dragons Women’s and Junior Division (Varsity) teams. The dragons are part of the program he started in the Greater Cincinnati Adapted Sports Club (GCASC) to provide recreational opportunities for other disabled athletes. Counts has played wheelchair basketball for 18 years on multiple levels. He started playing wheelchair basketball in 1999 with the Cincinnati Slammers and went on to play for the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater where he won three national championships. His college career led him to become a member of the U.S. National Team for four years and play professionally overseas in Rome and Taranto.
Perry is the Recreation and Athletics Coordinator for Lakeshore Foundation, a U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Site. She was instrumental in the successful planning and execution of the NWBA Women’s & Military Wheelchair Basketball National Championships last April. In addition to her duties as tournament director, Perry coaches Lakeshore’s Prep, Varsity and Adul Division III teams. Perry has volunteered at USA Women’s Training Camps and friendlies over the past year. Perry is a 2014 graduate of the University of South Alabama, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Leisure Studies.
Rougeau currently serves as an assistant coach at the University of Michigan with prior experience in this role with the men’s and women’s teams at the University of Illinois. Rougeau is also a member of the South Oakland County Soccer/Detroit City Football Club travel camp coaching staff. She does have experience being around Team USA, having been an observing coach with the Women’s U25 World Championship Team and Senior National Team in 2019. Rougeau is a 2007 graduate of Oakland University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Wellness, Health Promotion & Injury Prevention. She earned a master’s in Kinesiology in 2015 and a Ph.D in Kinesiology in 2017 both from the University of Illinois-Champaign.
Curry is currently the Director of Sports Medicine for Adaptive Athletics at the University of Alabama, overseeing the Tide’s men’s and women’s wheelchair basketball programs along with the wheelchair tennis team. Curry brings extensive experience across all levels of athletics, having served as an athletic trainer for Hecker Sports and Regenerative Medicine, Regis University in addition to a stint with USA Football. Curry earned two bachelor’s degrees –one in Athletic Training and a second one in Sports & Exercise Science from the University of Northern Colorado. Curry also has a master’s degree in health care administration.
About U.S. Women’s U25 Wheelchair Basketball Team
The U.S. Women’s U25 Wheelchair Basketball Team is an international development team that serves as our pipeline to the U.S. Women’s National Team. This program gives our elite youth athletes the opportunity to compete at the international level, obtain their official IWBF Classification and may be entered into the pipeline of athletes for future U.S. Women’s Teams. The IWBF Women’s U25 World Championship is hosted only every four years by the IWBF. Team USA won gold at the inaugural IWBF Women’s U25 World Championship in 2011 held in St. Catharines, Canada. The U.S. did not participate in U25 Worlds in 2015 in Beijing, China; Team USA won gold at this event in 2019 in Thailand.