Thursday, August 8, 2013

EDIT: ONE MORE/Jasmyn Martin to Hopkins, and Other Transfers

EDIT 7-8-13: Lizzie Odegaard is leaving Cretin to play for Minnetonka.

As has been long rumored, 6-3 freshman sensation Jasmyn Martin will not return to Bloomington Kennedy in the fall. It has now been reported that she will be playing for 3-time defending state champion Hopkins.

Martin is of course a world-class volleyball player as well as basketball player, and it just so happens that Hopkins has an all-America volleyball setter in Samantha Seliger Swenson, rated as the #1 sophomore (class of 2015) last year in the state of Minnesota by Breakdown Sports USA. She will be a junior this coming year, as Martin enters her 9th grade season. Hopkins was 27-5 last year, 5-3 in the Lake Conference. Eden Prairie won the Lake Conference title at 7-1 and defeated Hopkins in the section final to earn a trip to the state tournament.

Turning to Hopkins girls basketball, Martin joins a star-studded roster. Hopkins of course lost Nia Coffey, Mikaala Shackleford, Taylor Anderson and Erin O'Toole to graduation--all 4 going D1, though Anderson doing so in track and field rather than in hoops.

But the cupboard remains fully stocked. Here's a guess as to the Hopkins lineup come this fall.

F- Jasmyn Martin--6-3 freshman,  9 ppg with 6 rebounds at Kennedy last year, rated #1 in her class
PF- Molly O'Toole--5-10 senior, rated #26 in her class
SG/SF- T.T. Starks--5-9 junior, #2 in her class, scored 6 ppg a year ago
PG- Viria Livingston--5-7 junior, rated #15 but as high as #3 before sitting out Jan.-July with a knee
SG- Nia Hollie--5-10 sophomore, rated #3 in her class, scored 9 ppg


C- Liz Bulver--sophomore, rated #27 in her class
F- Ashley Omete--5-11 junior #66
G- Ashley Bates--5-7 sophomore #12
G- Kaezha Wubben--5-7 sophomore #34
G- Deanna Winston--5-4 freshman #13
G- Evelyn Knox--5-6 sophomore #36
G- Sierra Bagstad--5-9 sophomore #86

Hopkins' bench could probably win a couple of sections. Its full roster would seem to be utterly incapable of NOT winning a 4th straight state title. I mean, Martin moves them from heavily favored to prohibitive.

Other Transfers

A whole bunch of transfers are rumored. The ones that have been confirmed are:

Lindsay Malecha from Lakeville North to Hill-Murray
Brooke Heggie from Crookston to Alexandria
Kiara Russell from Bloomington Kennedy to Osseo
Aejah Lockett from Simley to DeLaSalle

Among the rumors are additional girls to DeLaSalle.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Another Gopher 2014 Verbal: Rangie Bessard, Houston, TX

Here's what the Alvin Sun said about the Minnesota Gopher women's latest recruit. This was at the conclusion of a summer 2013 event.

"Rangie Bessard, 6-1 forward, Houston Elite White (Manvel HS)
 Bessard continues to improve and over the weekend she showed a consistent mid-range game. She’s hard to handle in the paint, she can  score easily and rebounds on both ends. She’s also knocking down the three with regularity, even capping things off with a couple of four-point plays.  She is currently being recruited by Texas Tech, Minnesota, Mississippi State, Oregon State, Southern Mississippi and Texas Southern."

Someday Gopher fans are likely to look back on 2014 as a watershed year for the Gopher women. 2014 is now a huge group as recruiting classes go--6 girls. 

And it's notable by the fact that only 2 of the recruits are Minnesotans. 6 of 8 women on the roster as of today are from Minnesota. Only 3 of 8 in the incoming classes of 2013 and 2014 are Minnesotans. 5 of 8 are from Texas (3) and Ohio (2).

And basically coach Pam Borton whiffed on what is regarded as one of the greatest graduating classes in Minnesota history, "the Mighty 2013s." And only Carlie Wagner among the 3 current Minnesota verbals is regarded as a "catch."

Why Ohio and Texas? Well, associate head coach Curtis Loyd's hometown in Dallas, TX, and he was associate head coach at Akron U. in Ohio for 2 years from 2009-2010. Assistant coaches Ted Riverso and Kelly Roysland have no known connection to either state. 

Right now the 2016-2017 depth chart looks like this:

C- Zahui Sweden (Sr), Buckingham Ohio (Jr)
PF- Stapleton Ohio (Jr), Bessard TX (Jr) 
SF- McDaniel TX (Sr)
PG- Coughlin MN (Jr), Hedstrom MN (Sr)
SG- Wagner MN (Jr), Jacob TX (Jr)

The 4 "bigs" average 6-3.5 so it looks like the Gophers are also getting bigger. 

With the addition of Bessard, the Gophers have 1 scholarship left to give to a 2014 if they should choose to do so. It is notable that 1 of 2 offers that are known to be "out there" is also a 6-1 forward, Cayla McMorris, of Park Center. On paper she is almost a carbon copy of Bessard. The other is even taller at 6-2 but is more of a perimeter type player, Tonoia Wade of Bloomington Kennedy.  

Minnesota is known also to have an offer out to Nia Hollie, Hopkins, a 5-10 sophomore guard (class of 2016; she would be a freshman in college in 2017). No other offers are known. Among the 2015s, the #1-rated Minnesotan is Sam Trammel, Eden Prairie, 6-2, post; #2 is T.T. Starks, Hopkins, 5-9, 4 position player; #3 is Maddie Guebert, Eastview, a 5-9 scoring guard. Among the 2016s Hollie is #3. Jamie Ruden, Rochester John Marshall, a 6-2 post/power forward is #1; and Courtney Frederickson, Minnetonka, a 6-1 forward, is #2. It is perhaps a moot point, however, to wonder which (other than Hollie) the Gophers are recruiting.