2018-19 Season: Personnel News


November 14, 2018: Junior guard Petra Holesinska is out for the season with a torn ACL.

It’s the sort of depth that the Illini will count on the rest of the way with junior guard Petra Holesinska out for the season due to a torn ACL in her right knee.

Holesinska, who suffered the injury in preseason practices, averaged 22.6 minutes and 6.7 points per game last season despite only starting 12 games.

Illinois State

November 29, 2018: Following a string of injuries, the Redbirds are down to eight healthy players for the time being. The latest: freshman guard Mary Crompton is out six weeks with a knee injury. Here’s a summary of the other injured players:

ISU has been without freshman Anya Brooks all season because of chronic nose bleeds, junior forward Megan Talbot has a broken foot and sophomore guard Paige Saylor a broken hand.

[ISU head coach Kristen] Gillespie hopes to be back at full strength by early January.

December 6, 2018:  With four of the team’s twelve scholarship players out with injuries, 6-0 volleyball player Lexi Wallen has been added to the roster.

Wallen is not just another great athlete dipping her toe into another sport. The 6-footer from Champaign scored over 2,200 points and was a three-time all-state selection at Champaign St. Thomas More.

The older sister of Illinois Wesleyan basketball player Doug Wallen wasn’t sure if she would pursue basketball or volleyball in college until her junior year when she concentrated on club volleyball.

“I haven’t played competitively in four years. It’s fun to get back into it,” said Wallen, whose first ISU basketball practice was Wednesday. “It’s definitely going to be challenging, especially learning all the plays when the team has already played seven games. I’ll work hard and try to catch up the best I can.”

Indiana State

November 15, 2018: Bree Boles, a 6-3 freshman forward out of Lapel HS (IN), is no longer part of the Sycamores program, as was noted in this article from last month. A source indicates she looking to transfer elsewhere.

Bree Boles of Lapel was one of five true freshmen on the ISU roster to start the season but the 6-foot-3 forward is no longer a part of the program, Hall said.

“We decided to part ways. Bree is a really great young lady. I’m just not sure this was the right fit for her to have the right mind frame for what we’re going to do. I wish her all the best. I think she’ll be successful no matter what she does in life and we’ll always be there to help her,” Hall said.


June 15, 2018: Freshman guard Kate Martin will miss the 2018-19 season with a torn ACL.

A two-time all-state and all-metro honoree, Martin would’ve likely provided backcourt depth behind guards Mackenzie Meyer, Alexis Sevillian, Kathleen Doyle and Tania Davis.

But as the Hawkeyes learned last season following Davis’ own ACL tear in December, you can never have too many guards. Martin’s injury depletes that depth a bit more.

November 2, 2018: Junior guard Kathleen Doyle will be out four to six weeks after suffering a fracture of her left (non-shooting) hand. In her sophomore campaign, Doyle averaged 11.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 6.6 assists per game.

Junior guard Kathleen Doyle suffered a left hand fracture during Friday’s practice and will miss four to six weeks, the Hawkeyes announced. The preseason all-Big Ten selection fractured the third and fourth metacarpal in her left (non-shooting) hand.

December 5, 2018: Kathleen Doyle returned from her injury in Iowa’s 73-70 victory over Iowa State, scoring 22 points.

Iowa coach Lisa Bluder provided little information Monday that Doyle would return this week, but an x-ray that day revealed enough progress in her fractured hand to give it a go.

The junior guard didn’t start, but she still made plenty of contributions off the bench.

“We did not get a call from our hand specialist until 4 o’clock Monday,” Bluder said. “So we did not know (she’d be able to go until then), and we didn’t practice until Tuesday. She had one practice leading up to this game.”

Iowa State

November 4, 2018: Two of the Cyclones’ freshmen will redshirt this season: Morgan Kane and Maddie Frederick.

On Sunday afternoon, women’s basketball coach Bill Fennelly announced that freshmen Morgan Kane and Maddie Frederick will redshirt their first season at Iowa State.

“They’re great kids, and any day that they’re with us, we’re a better program, we’re a better university,” he said after Iowa State defeated Winona State 73-39 in an exhibition at Hilton Coliseum. “They made the decision that they will redshirt and get their fifth year.”

Kansas State

November 30, 2018: Sophomore guard Cymone Goodrich is out for the season with a shoulder injury.

Kansas State women’s basketball head coach Jeff Mittie has announced that sophomore guard Cymone Goodrich will miss the remainder of the 2018-19 season due to a shoulder injury. K-State and Goodrich will apply for a medical hardship to regain this season of eligibility.

“We are disappointed for Cymone as she had worked hard this offseason in preparation for this season,” said Mittie about the loss of the Chicago, Illinois, native. “We look forward to her getting back on the court healthy and ready to go for the 2019-20 season.”

Before sustaining the injury, Goodrich played in the season-opener against Omaha on November 12. She came off the bench to register 16 minutes of action and tally eight points, four rebounds and two steals.


October 22, 2018: Sophomore center Dorie Harrison is out indefinitely for “personal health reasons.” She had averaged 6.7 PPG and 3.8 RPG during the 2017-18 season.

“Dorie needs to step away from the basketball court to address her personal health. We will give her the time she needs to get healthy and she has our full support. We look forward to her return to the court. We ask everyone to respect her privacy during this time,” Mitchell said.

Harrison played in 32 games last season with eight starts, averaging 6.7 points per game and 3.8 rebounds per game. The native of Nashville was named the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Week after scoring 15 points with five rebounds vs. Alabama and 16 points with four rebounds at Arkansas.

Louisiana Tech

October 27, 2018: Junior guard Grayson Bright, a transfer from Texas Tech, announced that she had received an immediate-eligibility waiver from the NCAA.


October 14, 2018Loretta Kakala (6-2 center out of Manteca, CA) announces that she’s transferring from Louisville to Pacific (West Coast Conference). Ranked #25 by espnW in the 2017 class and also named a McDonald’s All-American, she redshirted last season after seeing action in four games.

This continues the extraordinarily high rate of transfers out of the Louisville program. They signed eighteen players in the 2014 through 2017 recruiting classes, with half of them (nine) now having transferred out.

November 26, 2018: Grad transfer guard Yacine Diop is out for the season with a torn ACL. She had tallied 8.3 PPG and 5.7 RPG in the first three UL games this season, starting two of them. It’s possible Diop could return to the Cardinals next season, if the NCAA grants her a sixth year of eligibillity.

Diop, a 5-foot-10 guard, had played in all three of Louisville’s games prior to the injury, starting twice. She was averaging 8.3 points and 5.7 rebounds and led the Cardinals in deflections.

Walz said Louisville will appeal to the NCAA for a sixth year of eligibility for Diop.

“If she wants to, we’d love to have her back,” Walz said. “But at the same time if she’s able to find something professionally that is a good opportunity, we want to make sure she takes the best option possible for her career and that’s what we’ll give her.”


October 10, 2018Rongomai Timson, who had signed with the Black Bears in the spring as part of their 2018 recruiting class, won’t be joining the team. Timson, a point guard out of New Zealand, attended Life Prep Academy (Wichita, KS) the last two years.

New Zealand Under-16 national team point guard Rongomai Timson, who signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University of Maine on a basketball scholarship, had a change of heart.

“She didn’t come. Things just didn’t work out,” said University of Maine women’s head coach Amy Vachon, who wouldn’t elaborate on the reasons for Timson’s decision.


October 18, 2018: Junior wing Blair Watson could be back “around the start of the new year.” She had suffered a torn ACL in early January and ended up being the Terps second-leading scorer in 2017-18 at 13.8 PPG, playing in only 17 games.

Watson was cleared for contact just Wednesday and said she is expected to be able to go “full throttle” sometime around the start of the new year, but Frese said they won’t rush the process. . . .

Watson made her biggest impact from the wing last season; she had made a team-leading 63 three-pointers (third-most in the Big Ten) when the injury ended her season early. Although Watson said she feels good after undergoing surgery to repair the ligament in February, she still has a mental hurdle to overcome.

“It’s still hard now, because I did tear it going up for a layup,” she said. “So now when I go up for layups, I have to reassure myself that everything is okay. Like, ‘Don’t get in your mind; your leg is perfectly fine.’ ”


November 1, 2018: Junior wing Akienreh Johnson will miss the opening games of the 2018-19 season after breaking a bone in her non-shooting hand. She may be back for the team’s Thanksgiving trip to the Gulf Coast Showcase. Johnson was expected to be a key player in the Wolverines’ rotation after coming on late last season, scoring in double digits in three of the final six games.

November 23, 2018: As expected, Akienreh Johnson returned to the court for the Gulf Coast Showcase, scoring 2 points and grabbing 5 rebounds in 11 minutes of action, in the Wolverines’ 70-54 victory over #21-ranked Missouri.


October 23, 2018: Junior guard Gadiva Hubbard is out indefinitely after having surgery on her right foot. A returning starter for the Gophers, Hubbard had tallied 13.6 PPG in 34.9 MPG during the 2017-18 season.

Gophers guard Gadiva Hubbard had surgery on her right foot Friday and will be out indefinitely.

Coach Lindsay Whalen made the announcement at media availability Tuesday. She said no timetable has been set for Hubbard’s return, but that she hopes the 5-9 junior will be able to return this season.

Ole Miss

November 14, 2018: True freshman forward Gabby Crawford, who originally signed with and enrolled at Alabama, has now been ruled eligible after her transfer to Ole Miss. She was ranked in the top 100 in the 2018 recruiting class.

A surprise spark to that competitive edge came a couple hours before tipoff, as true freshman Gabby Crawford was cleared to play tonight after transferring from Alabama at the beginning of the semester. In her debut, the four-star recruit out of Munford, Tennessee, put up six points, three rebounds and two blocks.

“I don’t know if there’s a word for how big it was to have Gabby,” McPhee-McCuin said. “What’s so impressive about what Gabby did tonight is that she found out two hours before the game that she was gonna play. For the whole week, she didn’t even practice with us, she was on the scout team. For her to come and show the composure and the fight, I’m so pleased and happy for her. I know as a program, we were ecstatic.”

Mississippi State

September 24, 2018: Bulldogs head coach Vic Schaefer says the team is pursuing immediate eligibility waivers for two transfers: guard Andra Espinoza-Hunter (ex-Connecticut) and center Promise Taylor (ex–Ole Miss). His 2018-19 squad has already been bolstered with the addition of grad transfer Anriel Howard (ex–Texas A&M).

Ten of the 15 players on the roster averaged double-digit minutes on the trip to Italy. Guard Andra Espinoza-Hunter, a transfer from Connecticut, averaged 14.3 minutes per game, while center Promise Taylor, a transfer from Ole Miss, averaged 7.0 mpg. Schaefer said he isn’t sure if both players will be eligible to play this season. He said he isn’t sure when the NCAA will rule on the immediate eligibility of either player or both of them. Typically, transfers have to sit out a year when they transfer to another school.

Schaefer said MSU has to request a waiver from the NCAA for transfers. He said MSU has requested a waiver for Espinoza-Hunter but it hasn’t yet for Taylor, but it will.

“I would hope that they would be eligible,” Schaefer said. “I think each case has its own merits, so we’ll be anxious to see.”

October 6, 2018: With Vic Schaefer awaiting word on whether transfer center Promise Taylor would be eligible for 2018-19, another of the centers on his roster, Daphane White, has reportedly transferred out, electing to join the Mississippi Gulf Coast CC team. White was ranked #45 in the 2018 class, per espnW. This development, plus the transfer of junior forward Jonika Garvin to Palm Beach Atlantic University (D-II), opens up additional room for the Bulldogs’ 2019 recruiting class.

October 16, 2018: The Bulldogs gain even more room for their 2019 recruiting class with the departure of Jacaira “Iggy” Allen, a redshirt sophomore guard out of Pompano Beach, FL. She was espnW’s #77 player in the 2016 class.

Mississippi State women’s basketball coach Vic Schaefer confirmed Monday night that redshirt sophomore guard Jacaira “Iggy” Allen is no longer with the program.

Allen, a 5-foot-10 guard from Pompano Beach, Florida (Dillard High School), sat out the 2017-18 season after tearing an anterior cruciate ligament in the preseason. Schaefer said numerous times last season Allen looked great in the offseason and in the preseason and was a contender for a starting spot. He declined to comment on Allen’s decision to leave MSU.

November 7, 2018:  The NCAA approved sophomore guard Andra Espinoza-Hunter‘s request for a transfer waiver, making her immediately eligible.

On Wednesday, the NCAA approved the waiver of Mississippi State sophomore guard Andra Espinoza-Hunter, making her immediately eligible to play this season.

“I am really happy for Andra,” Vic Schaefer said. “I think the right decision was made, and we are really appreciative to everyone involved who spent time on this. Andra has worked extremely hard and has been great since the day she stepped foot on campus. She has prepared herself for this moment and will be ready to step in right away.”


November 21, 2018: Head coach Robin Pingeton has agreed to a four-year contract extension, through the 2024-25 season. Her base salary will be unchanged, but some other compensation items will see increases.

Under terms of the new deal, Pingeton’s base salary remains at $400,000, though her non-salary compensation for TV/radio shows, speaking appearances, apparel contracts and other matters increases from $75,000 to $100,000. Also, her annual fund managed by the university increases its yearly deposit from $75,000 to $100,000.


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Categories: 2018–19 season

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