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Monday, June 19, 2006 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Basketball: Hawes is a finalist for U.S. U18 squad

SAN ANTONIO — Spencer Hawes, University of Washington men's basketball signee, is one of the 16 finalists for the USA Basketball men's under-18 team.

The finalists will train in San Antonio over the next week, looking to earn a roster spot on the official 12-member USA U18 squad. That team, coached by Huskies coach Lorenzo Romar, will compete in the 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, June 28-July 2 in San Antonio.

The finalists for the team were selected by the USA Basketball Men's Collegiate Committee, chaired by Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim.

"I thought the committee did a great job of selecting kids that were enthusiastic, kids that were unselfish," Romar said.

Hawes, a 7-foot center from Seattle Prep, was a member of the 2006 USA junior national select team. He had eight points and three rebounds in the USA's 109-91 win over the World Select Team on April 8 in the ninth annual Nike Hoop Summit in Memphis, Tenn.

"The reduction from 16 to 12 is always a difficult process," Romar said. "You would like to think 12 would separate themselves, but that's not always the case. It's very difficult down the stretch because one or two guys always make it very hard.

"It's tough when you bond together over a week's time and you feel like you've become a family and now you have to ask someone to leave. That's tough, but it's a part of what needs to happen."

Compiled from sports-information reports and other sources.

Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company

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