In part 1 of this series, we reviewed our six returning veteran players. Now let's take a look at the six new players joining the Wildcat women.
First up, our four walk-ons. (Because why not let the walk-ons get the spotlight first, for once?)
Jessica Hardin is a 5'8" senior from Monticello, KY who played at Bellarmine before transferring to UK earlier in her career to focus on her degree in communications. While at Bellarmine Jessica averaged 20.6 PPG in her 26 games played and proved to be a strong three-point shooter, hitting 37% of her attempts. Her UK connections run deep, as her grandfather James played football for Kentucky.
During her high school career, 5'11" junior guard Rachel Potter scored over 2000 points (2,369 to be exact) for Pikeville, KY where she was a four-year starter. She was also class valedictorian and is pursuing a degree in agricultural biotechnology and biology. (Author's note: I'm pretty sure I've never written a hoops player was valedictorian before. Seriously, when did this woman sleep?)
6' Sophomore Forward LaShae Halsel hails from Bowling Green, KY where she was a five-year starter for Warren Central. During her senior year, LaShae averaged over 9 points, and 11 rebounds a game. A skilled athlete, LaShae lettered in both basketball and track, and won a state title in the 4x100 relay.
5'8" Freshman Guard Paige Poffenberger is from Morgantown, WV. Paige originally chose UK over Vandy or WVU based on our biology program. During her high school career, Paige helped lead her squad to three state championships and scored 19 points in the regional game leading up to the final. She was also an Honor Society student, a National Merit Scholar, and VP of the student council.
Next up: our incoming scholarship players.
5'6" Freshman Guard Jaida Roper is from Memphis and was a four star/three-star recruit. During her high school career, Jaida scored over 1500 points, played in Tennessee's East/West All-Star Game, and averaged 13.2 points, 5.2 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 2.8 steals her senior season. (She also really likes Beyonce!)
6'1" Sophomore Guard Miami native Ogechi Anyagaligbo transferred to UK from Stony Brook, where she had been named American East Conference Rookie of the Year. Ogechi started in all 32 games she played at Stony Brook, and averaged over 10 points, and 9 rebounds a game. While in high school, Ogechi won all-state honors, 2 state titles and averaged 11 points and 9.6 rebounds per game. Another highly skilled athlete, Ogechi lettered in both basketball and volleyball. As a transfer, Ogechi will sit out this season, but will have a strong impact on the team in practices and conditioning.
And there you have it - your Kentucky Women's Basketball 2016-2017 Wildcats! A great blend of experience and fresh faces, and I can't wait to see how this group looks tonight at Big Blue Madness...we should be in for a very fun year!