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Women's basketball signs 3

Postby PonyPride » Sat Nov 16, 2019 6:31 pm

From SMUMustangs.com:

SMU Inks Trio Of Home-Grown Standouts For 2020

DALLAS (SMU) – SMU women's basketball head coach Travis Mays inked three local standouts to National Letters of Intent Wednesday. Three-time state champion Rhyle McKinney highlights the class, joining all-state guard Tamia Jones and point guard Jayla Brooks, the 2018-19 District 10-6A Offensive Player of the Year, as incoming freshmen in 2020.

"I could not be more excited about the 2020 signing class! Their enthusiasm and work ethic is contagious," Mays exclaimed. "Each one of these young ladies will make Mustang fans proud because of the way they carry themselves and take advantage of opportunities on and off the court! Their ability to score and create extra possessions for our team makes me incredibly excited about the future of SMU basketball! As a group, I know that they will create many special memories in Moody for our fans."

McKinney averaged 23.9 points with 4.3 rebounds and 2.9 steals as a junior. She was named Texas Class 1A-4A Player of the Year by the Texas Girls Coaches Association after leading Argyle to a 32-7 record, which included the program's fifth consecutive Class 4A state championship. McKinney was named to the all-state, all-area and all-district teams.

"Rhyle is one of the most prolific scorers in the state of Texas. Her story will inspire everyone following our team," Mays stated. "She is a champion on and off the court. Rhyle adds an immediate scoring threat to our team and will be a great addition to our conference."

In the semifinals of the state tournament, McKinney scored 27 of Argyle's 53 points, including a pair of free throws with six seconds remaining in a two-point win. She was named MVP of the Texas Class 4A State Championship game after scoring 25 points in a 49-41 win.

According to the Denton Record-Chronicle, McKinney chose SMU because, "I felt when I first got there that it was exactly what I wanted." McKinney continued, "There was so much there that made me feel at home…"

Jones was named to the all-state team after a stellar year at The Colony High School, where she led her team to the Class 5A Region I semifinals. She scored 14 points in a 68-66 loss to eventual state champion Amarillo, finishing the season with 16.2 points and 4.7 assists per game.

"Tamia can do it all! She elevates the game of everyone around her simply because of her leadership and work ethic," explained Mays. "Tamia is one of the most focused and driven young ladies that I have ever recruited. She adds scoring, defense and toughness to our team."

According to the Dallas Morning News, Jones will be a key piece in one of North Texas' premier backcourts during her senior season.

"Tamia Jones is one of the top two-way guards in the state of Texas. Tamia's natural leadership qualities and work ethic along with her God-given ability on the court, will make her a cornerstone piece of head coach Travis Mays' roster over the next four years," said Jason Key of Premier Basketball Report.

During her junior season, Brooks led Sachse to the Texas 6A Region II quarterfinals before a one-point loss to eventual state semifinalist Allen, 49-48. She is a three-time first-team all-district selection. During her sophomore campaign, Brooks led Sachse to one of the most prolific comeback wins in program history. Trailing Pflugerville Hendrickson 27-4 in the second quarter of the 2018 Class 6A Region II semifinal, Brooks aided in the comeback to send Sachse to just its second region final in school history.

Brooks made her mark on the defensive end. She stole a pass and assisted on a 3-pointer, sparking a run that left Sachse down just 12 at halftime, 30-18. Trailing by two, 50-48, with less than a minute left in the game, Brooks forced a steal and drove through the lane for a layup to send the game to overtime. Brooks anchored a defense which allowed just six points in the overtime period as Sachse advanced with a 68-56 win.

"Jayla is one of the best on ball defenders in the state. Her work ethic and attention to detail make her a winner," Mays proclaimed. "We are looking forward to having Jayla on our team. She will be a leader on and off the court here at SMU."

With no seniors on the current SMU roster, the trio of TGCA-acclaimed guards will join a veteran squad for the 2020-21 season. The Mustangs have three juniors, five sophomores and three freshmen, including one redshirt, this season.

SMU is 2-0 this season after defeating (RV) Rice, 55-43, snapping the Owls' 20-game regular-season win streak. The Mustangs started the year with a 21-point win at home, 81-60, against McNeese. The Mustangs scored 50 points in a half for the first time since Nov. 26, 2004, and five players scored at least 10 points.
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