Canada’s Laeticia Amihere was chosen eighth total by the Atlanta Dream within the first spherical of the 2023 WNBA Draft on Monday night time in New York.
The 21-year-old ahead declared for the draft on Tuesday after finishing her fourth season with the University of South Carolina, profitable a nationwide championship in 2022.
WATCH | Amihere chosen by Dream:
Canada’s Laeticia Amihere chosen eighth total by WNBA’s Atlanta Dream
The Gamecocks made one other run to the NCAA Final Four this season earlier than being knocked out of the match by star guard Caitlin Clark and the Iowa Hawkeyes.
The Mississauga, Ont., native averaged 15.9 minutes throughout 36 video games this season, recording per-game averages of seven.1 factors, 3.4 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks.
The Dream additionally chosen guard Haley Jones out of Stanford with the No. 6 choose.
WATCH | Amihere prepares for draft:
My Story: Laeticia Amihere
Amihere was one in every of three South Carolina gamers taken within the first spherical. Aliyah Boston went first to Atlanta and Zia Cooke tenth to Los Angeles.
“It’s wonderful expertise actually, as a result of this group of ladies have been by life collectively,” Amihere stated. “These 4 years have not been solely about basketball. Being capable of be with them on one in every of our largest nights is a tremendous expertise.”
It’s the tenth time that three gamers from the identical staff have been drafted within the opening spherical, and the primary since Oregon had three in 2020.
Boston goes No. 1
The new Indiana star Boston had a stellar school profession, main the Gamecocks to a nationwide championship her junior yr and shedding solely 9 video games complete. She was a three-time Associated Press All-American and likewise the Player of the Year as a junior.
“It’s actually particular, I’m grateful to God for placing me on this place,” stated the 21-year-old Boston, from the U.S. Virgin Islands. “Everyone in Indiana, they noticed one thing in me, I’m able to get there and get to work.”
The Fever had the worst file within the league final season, going 5-31.
“Aliyah Boston can have a right away impression on our franchise on and off the courtroom,” Fever GM Lin Dunn stated. ‘We are excited to pair her with Kelsey [Mitchell] and NaLyssa [Smith] as we reload the Indiana Fever. We are very impressed with Aliyah’s submit expertise in addition to her pure management expertise. This a an ideal day for our franchise!”
Boston, like many different gamers, have had to decide on whether or not to return to school for a fifth season due to the additional yr granted for the COVID-19 virus or flip professional. She determined to enter the WNBA draft, becoming a member of 111 different gamers to declare.
“Everyone that has a COVID yr has a troublesome selection,” Boston stated. “You may very well be someplace you recognize the system. … It took lots of thought.”
The second <a href=”https://twitter.com/aa_boston?ref_src=twsrcpercent5Etfw”>@aa_boston</a> heard her title within the 2023 <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/WNBADraft?src=hash&ref_src=twsrcpercent5Etfw”>#WNBADraft</a> offered by <a href=”https://twitter.com/StateFarm?ref_src=twsrcpercent5Etfw”>@Statefarm</a> 🤩 <a href=”https://t.co/k1xe2OSHZ3″>pic.twitter.com/k1xe2OSHZ3</a>
Minnesota took Diamond Miller of Maryland with the No. 2 choose, and Dallas drafted Maddy Siegrist of Villanova with the third choose. Big East Commissioner Val Ackerman, who was the WNBA’s first president, sat with Siegrist.
The Wings additionally drafted UConn guard Lou Lopez Senechal two picks later. She had transferred to UConn after a stellar profession at Fairfield.
“It feels surreal, actually did not assume I’d be right here,” Senechal stated. “I’ve come a great distance, gone by lots of challenges.”
Stephanie Soares of Iowa State went fourth to Washington. The Mystics rapidly traded her to Dallas quickly after choosing the 6-foot-7 centre. Washington received again a future first- and second-round choose.
“It was a really attention-grabbing feeling,” Soares stated. “Pure pleasure going to Washington, however now attending to go to Dallas. It’s going to be an ideal subsequent step to the journey.”
Soares tore her ACL in January and can miss the upcoming WNBA season.
Indiana’s Grace Berger was drafted seventh by the Fever and Seattle took Tennessee’s Jordan Horston ninth.
Dallas selected Maryland’s Abby Meyers with the eleventh choose. Meyers began her profession at Princeton earlier than ending with the Terrapins.
Minnesota closed out the primary spherical taking French centre Maia Hirsch.
LSU guard Alexis Morris, who helped the Tigers win a nationwide championship eight days in the past, was taken twenty second by the Connecticut Sun. Her LSU teammate LaDazhia Williams was drafted six picks earlier by Indiana.
USC grad college students Kadi Sissoko and Okako Adika have been taken twenty ninth and thirtieth by Phoenix and New York, respectively. It’s the primary time since 2012 the college had two gamers chosen within the draft.
Illinois State graduate guard Paige Robinson was the primary participant drafted from the college when she was chosen thirty first by Dallas.