Taking the Nike Girls EYBL circuit and proving its dominance at the forthcoming Nike Nationals Tournament is much more than just a pipe dream for the Boo Williams Summer League Squad.
Now at 7-1 on the circuit following its win Friday morning in Louisville, the Virginia-based AAU power is again looking like one of the best AAU teams in the country.
Its crop of talent is impressive, but equally impressive is how the squad is able to play together into a cohesive unit.
“We just play well together. We share the ball well,” said star 2019 prospect Ashley Owusu. “Playing together is really important for us.”
There is plenty of motivation this summer for Boo Williams to take home a National Championship, but there’s just as much personal motivation for Owusu.
Earlier this summer, Owusu competed at the USA Basketball U16 trials, but was cut after making the top 18. It’s fueled a fire for Owusu to prove she’s among the best high school players in the country, and so far she is playing like it.
Owusu leads Boo Williams in both points and assists this summer and has helped spark its hot start to the summer season.
“I got cut so it helped me coming into this because I have a chip on my shoulder,” Owusu said. “I try to destroy everyone in my way.”
Helping lead the way for Boo Williams is Maryland commit Shakira Austin, who is among the top 10 seniors-to-be in the country according to ESPN’s rankings. Austin has proven to be a double-double threat each game with her 6-foot-5 frame. Her shot-blocking ability was on full display Friday morning in her team’s win versus West Coast Premier when she blocked four shots in just the first quarter.
Throw in 5-star guard Honesty Scott-Grayson with athletic wing Xaria Wiggins and 6-foot-4 West Virginia commit Rochelle Norris, Boo Williams head coach Marcellus Williams still finds a way to offer plenty of minutes to promising 2020 prospect Elizabeth Martino.
All stars and considered among the best recruits in the country, they’ve sacrificed individual stats for team glory.
“It’s like how it is in college. You have to buy in and make it work,” Williams said. “That’s how you win a championship.”
And a championship is a realistic goal for Boo Williams, who are one of just five teams in the circuit to win at least seven of its first eight games.
The goals and ambitions for the team are in the back of their heads, but they aren’t getting ahead of themselves just yet.
“We’re just taking it a game at a time and play at a time,” Williams said. “We’re pleased with how the season has been so far.”
Boo Williams is well on its way to finishing in the top 24 in the 32-team Nike EYBL league, which will automatically qualify it for the National Tournament. Its team made it to the semifinals last year.
By Mike Stunson