Gibbs, Taylor At U.S. National Team Trials

Pitt men's basketball coach Jamie Dixon will get a head start on coaching two of his younger stars this month, as sophomore Ashton Gibbs and incoming freshman Dante Taylor have been named to the USA Basketball Men's Under-19 National Team Trials roster.

Dixon will coach the Under-19 National Team, so the duo should know what he'll be looking for during their audition at the Trials June 16-18 at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Pittsburgh players Ashton Gibbs and Dante Taylor are among 17 athletes, born on or after January 1, 1990, who will participate in the Trials. Training camp for selected finalists begins June 19, with the 12-member USA roster being announced prior to the team's departure for the tournament June 25. The USA National Team will compete in the FIBA Under-19 World Championship July 2-12 in Auckland, New Zealand.

A West Orange, N.J. native, Gibbs led the Big East Conference in 3-point field-goal percentage (.439) and averaged 4.3 points in 35 games played as a freshman in 2008-09. The sophomore combo-guard reached double-figure scoring in six games, hit at least one 3-pointer in 19 contests and converted three or more 3-pointers in six games this past season.

Taylor will enter his freshman year at Pitt in September. In February, he became the fifth signee in school history to earn McDonald's High School All-America accolades after averaging 23.8 points, 13 rebounds and three blocked shots per game as a senior at National Christian Academy in Maryland. Originally from Greenburgh, N.Y., Taylor also shot 65 percent from the floor, registered 23 double-doubles and scored 30-plus points in eight different contests last season.

In addition to Gibbs and Taylor, the 2009 USA Men's Under-19 World Championship Team Trials roster includes: Kenny Boynton (Florida / Pompano Beach, Fla.), Darryl Bryant (West Virginia / Brooklyn, N.Y.), DeAngelo Casto (Washington State / Spokane, Wash.), Seth Curry (Duke / Charlotte, N.C.), Drew Gordon (UCLA / San Jose, Calif.), Gordon Hayward (Butler / Brownsburg, Ind.), Shelvin Mack (Butler / Lexington, Ky.), Darius Miller (Kentucky / Maysville, Ky.), Arnett Moultrie (UTEP / Memphis, Tenn.), Ralph Sampson III (Minnesota / Duluth, Ga.), John Shurna (Northwestern / Glen Ellyn, Ill.), Tyshawn Taylor (Kansas / Jersey City, N.J.), Howard Thompkins (Georgia / Lithonia, Ga.), Klay Thompson (Washington State / Ladera Ranch, Calif.) and Terrico White (Mississippi / Memphis, Tenn.).

Panther Digest Top Stories