Local Athletics

Published on June 27th, 2018 | by TLV News


Three Ole Miss Rebels are in the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers

After spending a week working out back in his native country of Poland, Ole Miss junior Dominik Olejniczak earned a spot on the country’s national team to complete the first round of FIBA World Cup European Qualifiers. Olejniczak joins Rebel Basketball alums Tomasz Gielo and Sebastian Saiz in representing their countries in the qualifying games across Europe this week.

Although they were not at Ole Miss during the same time of their collegiate careers, Olejniczak and Gielo will be teammates for a pair of games. The Rebels will take the court for Poland on Thursday, June 28 in a matchup versus Lithuania. Three days later, the duo will join Poland in hitting the road to face Kosovo (July 1).

Ole Miss Forward Sebastian Saiz was the Rebels top player against Georgia Wedensday night, with 12 points, 13 rebounds, and 1 steal. Photograph by Newt Rayburn - © The Local Voice

Ole Miss Forward Sebastian Saiz is playing for Spain in the 2018 World Cup. Photograph by Newt Rayburn – © The Local Voice

Olejniczak is making his debut with Poland’s top national team. The 7-footer is coming off his first season on the floor for Ole Miss Basketball after having to sit out one year due to transferring from Drake. Playing in all 32 games, including 11 starts, Olejniczak averaged 4.3 points per game and shot 53.1 percent from the floor. The Torun, Poland, native scored a season-high 16 points at Texas, going head-to-head against the No. 6 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, Mohamed Bamba.

Gielo is no stranger to the Polish national team, playing in the previous four European Qualifiers for next year’s FIBA World Cup. The Rebel has appeared in all four contests, averaging 5.5 points per game and 19.1 minutes per game. He spent the past season with Joventut Badalona, competing in the same professional league in Spain as his former teammate Saiz.

Saiz and Spain will play Slovenia to begin the final week of first round qualifiers (June 28). The No. 2 rebounder (1,008 boards) in Ole Miss history concludes European qualifying July 1 as Spain hosts Belarus. Saiz has played in all four of Spain’s qualifying games thus far, averaging 5.3 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game. He has shot 50 percent from the floor over 13.1 minutes per game. Saiz just completed his first season of professional basketball, playing for Burgos in his native country. The Local Voice Ligature

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The Local Voice is a bimonthly entertainment guide and newspaper based in Oxford, Mississippi, covering and distributed in North Central Mississippi, including Oxford, Ole Miss, Taylor, Abbeville, Water Valley, Lafayette County, Yalobusha County, and parts of Panola County, Marshall County, and Tupelo . The Local Voice is distributed free to over 255 locations in North Mississippi and also available as a full color PDF download worldwide on the internet.

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