DURHAM, N.C. – Head coach Joanne P. McCallie and the Duke women’s basketball team will depart Monday, Aug. 14 for Italy as the Blue Devils embark on a trip of a lifetime to Rome, Florence, Siena and Venice from Aug. 14-23.
Duke has been practicing for the last two weeks in preparation for the tour, which has been very beneficial to the squad.
“Practices have been going very well and are competitive,” said McCallie. “I think we have gotten to learn some things that we can take into the fall and we are excited about playing. We have been implementing some new offensive plays and execution, which is something we are going to use this year that we haven’t used before. We have been concentrating on a few defenses, but not all of them. Also, we are working on playing together, our team chemistry, roles and opportunities offensively.”
The Blue Devils will fly into Rome and have two days of sightseeing, including a guided tour of Ancient Rome and heading to Piazza Navona, Pantheon, Spanish Steps and the Trevi Fountain. On the second night, Duke will play its first of three games against the Netherlands National Team. On day four the squad will feature a guided tour of Holy Rome before heading to Florence, Italy via high speed train.
Duke will spend three nights in Florence, while also taking in game two of the trip versus a set of Italian All-Stars. During the stay in Florence, the Blue Devils will have a guided tour to see Ponte Vecchio, Duomo, Dante’s House Museum and Giotto Bell Tower. The Blue Devils will also make a day trip to Siena, Italy.
To close the tour of Italy, Duke will head to Venice for the final three days. While in Venice, the Blue Devils will play its third and final game against Celje Basketball Club, which is a Slovenian team. Duke will also get to see more sights, including a water taxi on the Grand Canal walking tour of Venice and a full day Venice excursion to see the Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge and St. Mark’s Square.
“We all are thrilled for this incredible opportunity,” said Duke head coach McCallie. “This team, our staff and all traveling with us are grateful and eager to learn all we can about Italy while competing and learning more about each other. This is a special trip. Representing Duke abroad is truly an honor. This team is going to make the most of the experience.”
The last trip the Blue Devils went overseas was in 2012 as Duke went to France and Italy taking then center Allison Vernerey back home.
Fans will be able to follow Duke in Italy via www.GoDuke.com, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with daily updates.