Loren selected for U20s British basketball squad

Hemel's Loren Christie has been playing for the Britain U20s team at the European Championships in Romania.
Hemel's Loren Christie has been playing for the Britain U20s team at the European Championships in Romania.

Hemel Hempstead’s rising basketball star Loren Christie has been playing for the Great Britain under-20s squad at the European Championships.

The 17-year-old, who last season was named as the captain for the under-16s Britain team, has now gone one better by earning a spot on the 12-woman under-20s roster for the FIBA U20s European Championships in Romania.

The squad flew out to Romania on Friday and they started their Division B group games on Saturday.

Britain played the opening game of the tournament against Israel in Oradea before facing group games against hosts Romania as well as Lithuania, Ukraine and Greece.

They went down 55-72 to Israel, but Christie, coming off the bench, was highlighted as one of the top performers, with seven points and ten rebounds.

On Sunday, they went down fighting 61-76 to Romania , with Christie starting the game and chipping in with nine points, nine rebounds and an assist in nearly 27 minutes of play.

They then saw off Lithuania 65-54 on Monday with Christie again starting.

The youngster scored four points, added three rebounds and had two assist in her 22 minutes.

Christie is the youngest player in the squad and the only ‘underage’ team member who is playing up an age group.

When she returns from Romania, Christie will then go into the U18s selection camp for a second European Championships in Austria if she is selected.

Christie, who turned 17 in February, is a former student of Hemel Hempstead’s John F Kennedy Catholic School and is now in the sixth-form at Barking Abbey School in London. It has a basketball academy which integrates study with training.

While studying for her A-Levels, she also plays in the Women’s Elite Academy Basketball League for her school and in the Women’s British Basketball League (WBBL) for Barking Abbey London Lions.

After completing her A-Levels, her dream is to gain a basketball scholarship for a university in the United States. She hopes to play for an NCAA basketball programme, the top level of university sports in the US college system.

Every game from the championships is being streamed live via British Basketball’s Facebook page and FIBA’s YouTube page.