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Murray takes aim at another wheelchair hoops gold medal

Americans win tune-up for London games

Aug. 15, 2011

Germantown - Linda Murray is not going to make the same mistake she made in 2008 when her daughter Becca won Paralympic gold as part of the American wheelchair basketball team at the Beijing Olympics.

"We didn't wind up going," the Germantown resident said, "but when they (the London Olympics) come around next August, we'll be there, because we were all disappointed that we weren't there to see it (in 2008).

"And then we'll have another big party at my house (laughs)."

Becca and her teammates, who also won World Wheelchair Basketball gold shortly after the Beijing event, got a good recent tune-up for the 2012 games by claiming the title in the inaugural Women's U-25 World Championships held in Canada.

The American women won five games against a field that included squads from Germany, South Africa, Australia, Canada, Japan, Great Britain and Mexico.

Linda said that this particular team was very different from the 2008 Olympic squad, as only four holdovers, including Becca, were on it.

Following that, Linda had to put Becca back on a plane for North Carolina for training and another tournament. The next major event on the basketball team's docket is the Para-Pan-American Games in Mexico in November.

Becca is officially ending her sophomore year at UW-Whitewater where she's majoring in special education and coaching and playing for the school's wheelchair squad. Linda said that the school recently refinished the gym floor. It's a place Becca has been very familiar with since she was 12 years old and the first camps for girls wheelchair basketball were started.

"The men's (wheelchair) team took them in at the time and that's how it all got started," said Linda gratefully.

Linda admits she gets a touch frazzled with all the travel Becca is doing but it is all worthwhile.

"It seems like I'm always running to the airport putting her on a plane," Linda laughed. "It all runs together at times."

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