LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kentucky women’s basketball team signed four outstanding prep players to national letters-of-intent in the fall signing period, head coach Matthew Mitchell announced Wednesday.
Anna Cole, a 6-6 center from Mondovi High School in Mondovi, Wisc., Brittany Henderson, a 6-2 forward of John Muir High School in St. Altadena, Calif., Adia Mathies (pronounced ODD-e-uh MATH-is), a 5-9 guard of Iroquios High School in Louisville, Ky., and Porsha Postell (pronounced post-ELL), a 5-10 guard from Woodlands High School in White Plains, N.Y., have signed to play for the Wildcats next season.
“These four young ladies represent the kind of people we want to bring into the program,” Mitchell said. “Not only do they have a lot of talent as basketball players but they have a great deal of passion for the University of Kentucky and pride to want to wear the Blue and White. We are very excited about this class and the future of our program.”
Cole was named first-team All-Conference, second-team All-State and third-team All-Northwestern last season after averaging 12.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.0 blocks per game for Coach Shawn Brion at Mondovi High School. The three-year starter’s presence in the middle helped lead the Buffalos to the regional finals last season and finish with a remarkable 21-2 overall record and an undefeated 18-0 mark in the Dunn St. Croix conference. Cole’s AAU basketball squad, Team Wisconsin, is one of the best in the country having won the 2005 Junior Olympics and the 2004 National Championship title.
Cole also excels as a middle blocker on her high school’s volleyball team. She was named second-team All-Conference as a junior and honorable-mention All-Conference during her sophomore season. Cole committed to Kentucky early and did not seriously consider any other schools.
“Anna is a 6-6 post player who we are very excited about,” Mitchell said. “She is extremely excited about coming to Kentucky as well and that’s the kind of person we want in our program. Anna has tremendous size and has shown great work ethic this past year. We are looking for her to bring a strong low-post presence to our team that will impact us defensively and offensively. She has good hands and we have seen her improve since we first started recruiting her. We think her best basketball is ahead of her and we look for her to be a very powerful force in the SEC during her career.”
Henderson, a three-year starter at Pasadena’s John Muir High School, was a first team All-California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) selection and first-team member of the Pacific League. She averaged 15.0 points, 9.0 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game as a junior in helping lead the Mustangs to a 28-3 overall and unblemished 14-0 record in the Pacific League. She is ranked as one of the top 60 forwards by ESPN HoopGurlz.com.
Henderson chose Kentucky over Providence, Arizona, UCSB, and Houston.
“Brittany is a dynamic athlete,” Mitchell said. “She has shown the ability to be a tremendous rebounder at a high level and that will be very important to our success in the SEC. We need players who can compete on the boards night-in and night-out. Her ability to defend and rebound stand out to me and we think she will be a tremendous asset to our program.”
Mathies is ranked as the 13th-best shooting guard in the country and 65th overall player, according to ESPN HoopGurlz.com. An Iroquois High School varsity player since the sixth grade, she has tallied 2,374 career points and is set to start at guard for the seventh consecutive season. Mathies, an All-District, All-Region and All-State first-team selection, has led the Raiders to three Sweet Sixteen appearances in the last four years, including a runner-up finish in 2007. In that runner-up finish, she averaged 19.2 points, 8.8 boards, and 3.5 steals per game and was named to the All-Tournament Team. Last season, she averaged a double-double with 17.3 points and 11.4 rebounds and helped IHS finish with a 27-4 overall record.
Mathies, considered the top candidate for Kentucky’s Miss Basketball honor, chose Kentucky over Louisville and Florida.
“We feel that Adia is the best player in Kentucky and one of the best guards in the country,” Mitchell said. “She has one of the most polished games I’ve seen from a high school player. We look for her to make an immediate impact on our program because she is already a high-level defender along with the fact that she can score off penetration, she is a good shooter and a good passer. She is the total package.”
Postell is rated the No. 2 recruit out of the state of New York and is one of the nation’s top 65 players by the All-Star Girls Report. The combination guard, who has been voted her team’s Most Valuable Player in back-to-back seasons, plays all five positions at Woodlands High School. Postell led the state of New York in scoring last season, averaging an impressive 28.7 points per game and was named All-Section and All-State. She also has been an All-League selection three consecutive seasons, including being voted MVP of the league last year. She helped lead the Falcons to a 17-2 overall record in 2008 and a berth in the County Center playoffs. The four-year starter has already surpassed the 1,300-point mark and is on track to eclipse 2,000 points in her prep career.
Postell chose Kentucky over South Carolina, Seton Hall, St. John’s, and West Virginia.
“Porsha is a prolific scorer on the perimeter,” Mitchell said. “She led New York in scoring as a junior and she has that kind of mentality we need from a scoring, perimeter player. She has great range, she can shoot the three, and she can get to the basket. We are tremendously excited about her joining our family.”
The foursome joins Division I transfers Rebecca Gray (Georgetown, Ky.), a transfer from North Carolina, and Keyla Snowden (Lexington, Ky.), a transfer from Akron. Both are sitting out this season due to NCAA transfer rules.