Nov. 28, 2012
SPRINGFIELD -- The Missouri State women’s basketball program received five National Letters of Intent during the NCAA’s signing period earlier this month, filling its recruiting class with prep standouts Lexi Hughes, Onye Osemenam, Katie Palmer, Rachel Swartz and Katelyn Weber, head coach Nyla Milleson announced.
“This is a very good recruiting class that brings us great athleticism and really fits our needs,” Milleson said of this year’s recruiting crop. “The post group brings as much size in one class as we’ve had here, and the class as a whole provides a lot of versatility.”
Lexi Hughes • 5-7 • G • Kansas City, Kan. • Bishop Miege High
Hughes earned honorable mention all-state honors from the Wichita Eagle and the Kansas Basketball Coaches Association as a junior after averaging 13.3 points per game with season totals of 71 assists and 48 made 3-pointers. She was also a first-team All-East Kansas League selection after earning second-team all-league honors following a sophomore campaign in which she scored 10.8 points per contest and made 41 treys. Hughes averaged 6.9 points as a freshman, helping Bishop Miege to an 18-6 record and fourth-place state finish on the way to honorable mention all-conference accolades.
Onye Osemenam • 6-2 • F • Brooklyn Park, Minn. • Maranatha Christian Academy
A starting forward for the two-time defending Minnesota Class A state champs, Osemenam averaged 16.6 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks per game as a junior, surpassing 1,000 career points during the season, to earn honorable mention all-state honors. She finished the state tournament as the event’s top rebounder and No. 8 scorer, capping it with 10 points, nine boards and five blocks in the championship game. Osemenam averaged 12 points and 10 rebounds as a sophomore, and 14 points and 11 boards as a freshman, grabbing honorable mention all-state laurels that season as well. She is a three-time first-team all-conference choice.
Katie Palmer • 5-7 • G • Wichita, Kan. • Wichita Heights High
A second-team all-state pick following her junior season, Palmer has helped the Falcons to consecutive 25-0 seasons and Kansas Class 6A state championships. Palmer scored 10 points in the 2012 title game while adding first-team all-league and Wichita Eagle all-metro honors to her list of accomplishments. Palmer was also an honorable mention all-state selection after her sophomore season and an honorable mention all-league pick as a freshman while helping Heights to a 23-2 record.
Rachel Swartz • 6-3 • F • Stanwood, Wash. • Stanwood High
A four-year starter for the Stanwood Spartans, Swartz has helped her team improve its overall record and conference finish each season, up to a 23-3 record and second-place standing in 2011-12. Swartz averaged 10 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks per game as a junior, and 11 points and seven boards as a sophomore, earning all-area and all-academic awards each season. Swartz’s AAU team went 45-4 in 2012 and won the Fila Sixty-Four national tournament over the summer. Swartz is ranked as the nation’s No. 62 forward according to ESPN’s Hoopgurlz.com.
Katelyn Weber • 6-5 • C • Little Rock, Ark. • Hall High
Only two Lady Bears in program history have stood taller than Weber’s 6-foot-5 frame. As a junior, Weber averaged 6.6 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks for a balanced Hall High squad that went 23-6 and ranked fifth in its class in Arkansas. She also shot 74-percent from the foul line. ESPN’s recruiting site rates Weber as the nation’s No. 70 post player in the class of 2013.