Tajama Abraham

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Tajama Abraham Ngongba
George Mason Patriots
Position Assistant Coach
League Atlantic 10
Personal information
Born (1975-09-27) September 27, 1975 (age 42)
Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands
Career information
High school Kecoughtan High School, Hampton, Virginia
College George Washington (1993–1997)
WNBA draft 1997 / Round: 4 / Pick: 31st overall
Selected by the Sacramento Monarchs
Career history
As coach:
2000–02 Richmond (asst)
2002–04 Virginia Commonwealth (asst)
2004–08 George Washington (asst)
2008–13 Radford University (head)
2013–present George Mason (asst)

Tajama Abraham Ngongba (born September 27, 1975)[1] is a former professional basketball player in the Women's National Basketball Association.[2] Abraham attended George Washington University and was the 31st draft pick in the 1997 WNBA draft.[3] She played for Sacramento Monarchs in 1997[4] and Detroit Shock in 1998.[5] Abraham took a position as the women's Assistant Coach of basketball at George Mason University in 2013.[6]

Early years

Abraham was born September 27, 1975 on the island of St. Croix, in the United States Virgin Islands. She lived there until the age of 14 when the category 4 Hurricane Hugo hit the island on September 17 and 18, 1989. She took shelter in a commercial refrigerator, which measured 8' x 12', along with her four siblings, mother, father, and grandmother. After the destruction, the family moved to Hampton, Virginia. Not long after arriving in Virginia, local coaches and newspapers were talking about the high school basketball prospect who had arrived in town. Her father had played college ball at St. John's, and her two brothers were also basketball players who played at Marquette University and George Mason University.[7]

High school

Abraham attended Kecoughtan High School, in Hampton, Virginia. In her senior year, she averaged 27 points per game and 11 rebounds.[8] She earned Parade All-American (third team) status in 1993.[9][10]

College career

Tajama Abraham pulls down a rebound as the Colonial women defeated Drake in overtime in the second round of the women's NCAA tournament.

Abraham was ranked among the top 25 players in the nation as a senior, and recruited by multiple schools, including Virginia and Old Dominion. She chose the offer from George Washington, explaining, "`I really felt at home at George Washington".[11]

She joined the team coached by Joe McKeown who was in the fifth year of a 19 year stint at George Washington. The Colonials, under McKeown had a breakeven season in his first year, then finish second or tied for second in the Atlantic 10 conference in each of the next three years, advancing to the NCAA tournament twice. After Abraham joined the team, they finished first or tied for first in the Atlantic conference each of her four years, with an improving conference record each year culminating in a perfect 16–0 result in her senior year. The Colonials had an overall record of 28–6 in that year and reached the NCAA Elite eight. Abraham scored 2134 points in her career to graduate as the all-time leading scorer. She pulled down 970 rebounds to finish second all-time. She has the most career block shots (326) and leads in the number of games played (130). Her career accomplishments led to her induction in the George Washington Athletic Hall of Fame in 2004.[8] In her senior season she was named the Atlantic 10 conference player of the year as well as a first-team Kodak All-American.[8][12]

George Washington statistics

Sources[13][14][15]

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high
Year Team GP Points FG% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
1993-94 George Washington 31 414 54.1% 69.3% 9.0 2.0 2.4 2.2 13.4
1994-95 George Washington 32 442 51.4% 67.2% 6.0 0.6 0.9 2.3 13.8
1995-96 George Washington 33 642 56.5% 69.9% 9.3 0.7 1.2 2.8 19.5
1996-97 George Washington 34 675 50.3% 75.3% 7.7 1.0 1.6 2.7 19.9
Career 130 2173 53.0% 71.3% 8.0 1.0 1.5 2.5 16.7

Professional career

After graduating from George Washington with a degree in sociology, she was selected in the 1997 WNBA draft by the Sacramento Monarchs.[16] In 1998, the WNBA expanded and they held an expansion draft to allocate some players to the new teams. Abraham was the third pick of the expansion draft, chosen by the Detroit Shock.[17]

Coaching career

Following her professional career, Abraham returned to her alma mater and spent a year at George Washington University as an administrative assistant. Following that she accepted a position as an assistant coach at Richmond where she stayed for the 2000–2001 and 20021–02 seasons.[18] Abraham then moved on to Virginia Commonwealth, taking a position as an assistant coach which included responsibilities for conditioning, scouting, post play development, and recruiting. She held this position for two seasons, starting in the fall of 2002.[19]

She then returned to George Washington again, and served as an assistant coach for the next four years.[19]

In 2004, Radford University named Abraham to head coaching position of the women's basketball team. She remained at Radford for five years. In her third year, the team 111 conference games the most in almost 2 decades, leading to a tie for second place in the Big South conference and earning Abraham Big South coach of the year honors. She was completely surprised by the honor and reflected, "I'm a high-energy person. It took every fiber of my being just to keep from jumping up and down."[18]

Over the next two years, the team managed to go only .500 in conference play, and the school decided not to renew her contract now at the end of a five-year period.[20] She decided to return to the assistant coaching ranks, accepting an offer from Nyla Milleson at George Mason.[21]

Head coaching record

Sources[22][23]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Radford (Big South) (2008–2012)
2008–09 Radford 10-18 9-7 T-3rd
2009–10 Radford 6-22 5-11 7th
2010–11 Radford 22-11 11-5 T-2nd
2011–12 Radford 16-15 9-9 T-5th
2012–13 Radford 16-14 9-9 6th
Radford: 62–85 (.422) 43–41 (.512)


Total: 62–85 (.422)

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

References

  1. ^ "Tajama Abraham WNBA Stats | Basketball-Reference.com". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  2. ^ "Tajama Abraham - WNBA.com - Official Site of the WNBA". WNBA.com - Official Site of the WNBA. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 
  3. ^ "1997 WNBA Draft - Round 4 - WNBA - DraftSite.com". www.draftsite.com. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 
  4. ^ Wurst, Matt (September 20, 2005). "The Heart of A Champion". wnba.com. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  5. ^ "Tajama Abraham Ngongba Named Women's Basketball Assistant Coach". George Mason University. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 
  6. ^ "GoMason.com - The Official Athletic Site of George Mason University Athletics". www.gomason.com. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 
  7. ^ "News & Events - Radford University". www.radford.edu. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  8. ^ a b c "GWsports.com Tajama Abraham Ngongba Bio :: George Washington University Official Athletic Site". CBS Interactive. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  9. ^ "PARADE MAGAZINE ALL-AMERICANS FROM HAMPTON ROADS" (PDF). Tribune Publishing Company. 
  10. ^ "Star Girls To Meet Saturday". Daily Press. tribunedigital-dailypress. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  11. ^ "Notebook: Kecoughtan Star Bound For Gw". tribunedigital-dailypress. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  12. ^ "2009-10 GW Women's Basketball Media Guide". issuu. Issuu. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  13. ^ "George Washington statistics" (PDF). CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  14. ^ "George Washington statistics" (PDF). CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  15. ^ "George Washington statistics" (PDF). CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  16. ^ "1997 WNBA Draft - Round 4 - WNBA - DraftSite.com". www.draftsite.com. DraftSite LLC. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  17. ^ "SHOCK: Tajama Abraham". www.wnba.com. NBA Media Ventures, LLC | Turner Sports Interactive, Inc. Retrieved 2017-09-21. 
  18. ^ a b "News & Events - Radford University". www.radford.edu. Radford University. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  19. ^ a b "GoMason.com - The Official Athletic Site of George Mason University Athletics". gomason.com. George Mason Athletics. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  20. ^ Cox|[email protected]|381-1672, Ray. "Radford women's hoops coach fired". Roanoke Times. BH Media Group, Inc. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  21. ^ "Tajama Abraham Ngongba Named Women's Basketball Assistant Coach". George Mason University. George Mason University. Retrieved 2017-09-25. 
  22. ^ "Radford Coaching history". www.radfordathletics.com. Radford University. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 
  23. ^ "Big South Media Guide" (PDF). Big South Conference. Retrieved 2017-09-19. 

External links

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