University of Delaware Women’s Basketball Guard Akeema Richards to Represent U.S. Virgin Islands in 2012 Centrobasket Championship
Photo courtesy of Mark Campbell
• Centrobasket Championship Central
MOROVIS, P.R. – Akeema Richards will look to bring some of the University of Delaware women’s basketball team’s success to her home country this week when she represents the U.S. Virgin Islands at the Women’s Centrobasket Championship.
Richards, a 5-7 guard who will be a junior for the Blue Hens this coming season, will run the point for the USVI throughout the tournament, which begins Tuesday, June 12. The USVI will open the tournament against the Dominican Republic at 5 p.m. EST on Tuesday.
Eight teams will be matched against each other as they vie for a potential bid to the 2016 Olympic Games to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Held every two years, the Centrobasket Championship will qualify the top four teams for the 2013 International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Americas Championship, which will be the next step in qualification for the Olympics.
For this week's tournament, the USVI was drawn in Group B with the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Trinidad and Tobago. Group A includes Mexico, Puerto Rico, Jamaica and El Salvador.
Richards, who now calls Baltimore, Md. (Western HS) home, started in 32 games in the back court for Delaware and head coach Tina Martin during a record-breaking 31-2 season that included the Blue Hens’ first NCAA Tournament victory, an undefeated conference run, and a first-ever Colonial Athletic Association Tournament title. The Blue Hens were ranked as high as No. 7 nationally during the season.
Richards, who was playing her first season at Delaware after transferring from West Virginia University, ranked fourth on the team with both 6.2 points per game and 61 assists and also pulled 4.4 rebounds per contest.