Chicago teen youngest player selected for U.S. women’s wheelchair basketball team

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CHICAGO -- A Chicago teen who learned to play wheelchair basketball through a unique park district program has been selected as the youngest member of the U.S. women's national team, the National Wheelchair Basketball Association announced Wednesday.

Ixhelt Gonzalez will be added to the team's 12-player roster this year after being invited by the team to Colorado this week for tryouts. Gonzalez, who plays for the NWBA’s Chicago Skyhawks, is the youngest player on the roster at 13 years old.

"It's a big responsibility for me to go out there and show what I can do against the girls that are like collegiate level," Gonzalez told WGN just over a week ago.

As a member of the team, she  will compete in Germany this summer, and likely compete in the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

While she has taken her game to the next level, Gonzales still needs to borrow a regulation-compliant wheelchair to play basketball, so her family set up a GoFundMe campaign to help her get her own.

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