Christyn Williams from Central Arkansas Christian (Little Rock, Ark.) is ranked as the No. 1 overall player in espnW’s Class of 2018 rankings. Williams is the lone high schooler to make the USA Basketball Women’s U19 team that will play in the FIBA World Cup beginning July 22 in Udine, Italy. Williams has agreed to keep an exclusive blog for USA TODAY Sports of her journey. The team finished up training camp Friday and will head overseas for a three-game invitational, beginning Tuesday. Williams also is coming off a gold medal with the United States’ U18 3X3 team.
My eyes have been swollen the last few days and it’s been irritating so I went to the eye doctor. I have an infection. My eyesight was blurry, which makes sense on why my shot was off. I’ve been doing eye drops every two hours. It’s just unfortunate timing.
Otherwise, camp is going well. We’ve really improved since the first day. Offensively, we’re really executing and defensively, we’re getting a lot of stops. The grown men we scrimmage every day they’re really good for us and really competitive so it’s helpful. I’ve always played against guys. Guys are more physical so it’s better to play against the guys than girls because once you get to girls it’s so much easier.
I think at this point we’re all a little tired, but we get to travel and take a day off from being on the court.
We haven’t talked about it, but they expect me to be a scorer. I think that’s understood and, of course, everybody has to play good defense.
I don’t think it matters what style we play, though. To win gold, you have to be great offensively and defensively. We’re working on both ends because you have to do. Offensively, we’re looking to push the ball up the floor. Our team is very versatile. It depends on the day and the opponent.
They switch up the teams every day, but we’re all good enough to play with each other. We all get along together off the court and it carries on the court. We’ve built some chemistry in the seven days we’ve been together so far.
Coming out of 3X3, it’s different, but it definitely helps me. It’s more one-on-one situations, but when you get to five-on-five there are two other people on the floor with you. Defensively in 3X3, you have to stop your man because there is no help defense. I think going to 3X3 prepared me for this event.
I hope we get to look around Italy, but I don’t know the itinerary yet. In China, we went to a panda reserve and that was pretty cool. They are so cute. The venue we played in was right in front of the largest mall in the world and that was fun to and look around.