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Brittany Basinger begins training with U.S. Under-20 women

STATE COLLEGE — Pa. – Sophomore Mallory Weber (Novi, Mich.) and freshman Brittany Basinger (Purcellville, Va.) have been selected to train with the newest cycle of the U.S. U-20 women’s soccer team at its training camp, which begins on Sunday. The Nittany Lion duo will travel to Carson, California to train at the U.S. National Team Training Center at the StubHub Center for one full week.

Next week’s training camp will be the first of two leading up to the CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championships, which will take place in the Cayman Islands in January. The second camp will be held in Florida in mid-December.

“It is very exciting to see Mallory and Brittany follow in the footsteps of so many of their teammates that came before them,” said Penn State head coach Erica Walsh. “We are extremely proud of these two players and are thrilled that they will be representing our program on the national level”

Weber is currently one-of-seven forwards on the training squad and Basinger is one-of-four defenders named to the team. The U-20 team is led by first year head coach Michelle French.

“Mallory has consistently been one of the most dangerous wide players in the college game over the past two seasons,” said Walsh. “She has proven that she can beat players one on one at the highest level and has unparalleled work ethic on both sides of the ball.”

Weber posted seven goals and eight assists for the Nittany Lion offense during the 2013 campaign, starting all 23 matches in her sophomore season. The talented forward was third on the team in points (27) and turned in over 1,600 minute of playing time en route to earning first team All-Big Ten accolades.

“Being called into camp with the U-20 Women’s National Team is such an honor and a very rewarding feeling,” said Weber. “It is rewarding because I feel like my hard work is starting to pay off. I do not think I would have gotten this opportunity if it were not for my incredible team. I am very excited to go to camp and continue playing at a high level, as not many people have the opportunity to do this.”

Basinger had a phenomenal freshman campaign for the Blue and White, starting every match and logging over 1,700 minutes for the PSU backline while also adding two assists on the offensive end. The stalwart’s efforts were recognized at the end of the regular season as she was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team.

“In a matter of a few months, Brittany has established herself as one of the finest outside backs in the college game,” said Walsh. “She is a versatile, two-way player who possesses all of the attributes necessary to be successful at the highest level.”

Prior to her college career, Basinger experienced tremendous success with the U-17 national team. The defender helped lead her team to an undefeated record in group play at the U-17 World Cup in 2012, defeating Gambia and drawing with France and Korea. Basinger will reunite with several of her U-17 team members at the U-20 training camp, including Clemson defender Claire Wagner and Harvard forward Margaret Purce.

“Being selected to attend this U-20 training camp is a tremendous honor,” said Basinger. “After playing under Coach Walsh at Penn State this season, I know that I am fully prepared for this camp. I am extremely thankful and excited about this opportunity and I am very excited to be reunited with some of my good friends from our U-17 team.”

Weber and Basinger will be vying for a starting spot on the team for the CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship. The tournament will run from Jan. 9-19 at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex in George Town, Cayman Islands.