SANTA ANA (CBSLA) – An alumnus of Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, 23-year-old Katie Lou Samuelson helped the US women’s 3×3 basketball team qualify for the Tokyo Olympics with a 21-13 victory over Spain Sunday.
The women’s team got their big win in the semifinal of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Graz, Austria.READ MORE: LA County Increases Water Usage As State Drought Conditions Worsen
“I think all of us still are just kind of soaking it in, just to actually be part of qualifying America for the Tokyo field, because that’s awesome,” Samuelson said.
The Fullerton native was the only member of the four-player team not selected in 2020 for the U.S. women’s 3×3 team, which was attempting to qualify for the Olympics at a tournament in Bengaluru, India. However, that tournament and the Olympics were postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.READ MORE: Nearing Historic Strike Vote, Thousands Of Hollywood Workers Could Walk Off Sets Nationwide
“One thing I know with USA Basketball is you never know when you’re going to be needed, to get called up or when you’re going to need to step up,” Samuelson said. “I’m grateful I had this opportunity to fill in and I feel like we’ve been playing really well here.”
The game of 3×3 basketball is played half court with a 12-second shot clock. Baskets inside the arc and free throws count as one point and shots made from outside the arc are worth two. The first team to score 21 points or lead the game at the end of the 10-minute game clock gets the win.
The first ever 3×3 Olympic basketball competition is scheduled for July 24-28.MORE NEWS: LAPD Says Armed Robberies Have Become An Alarming Trend
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)