Nov. 17, 2011
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State women's basketball head coach Raegan Pebley announced the signing of forward Haylee Thompson and forward/guard Makenlee Williams for the 2012-13 season.
"We are thrilled about Hailey and Makenlee signing with us. They are two outstanding regional players that will help our program continue to move forward," Pebley said.
Thompson, a native of Hailey, Idaho, is a 6-1 forward who had a solid season last year at Wood River High School under coach Mendy Benson. The team's second-leading scorer, Thompson averaged 11.9 ppg on 285 points, plus 6.9 rebounds a game. The previous season, as a sophomore, she averaged 5.0 ppg, the fifth-leading scorer.
"Hailey will help us rebuild our depth in the post position after graduating three, possibly four, post players. She is a physical post player that will bring a great mentality to the paint," Pebley said.
Thompson scored in double figures in 19 of the 24 Wood River games as the Wolverines went 21-3 and placed second in the State 4A tournament. It was the best finish in 36 years of Wood River High girls' basketball. Last year, she scored in double digits in 19 of the 24 Wood River games as the Wolverines went 21-3 and placed second in the State 4A tournament. It was the best finish in 36 years of Wood River girls' basketball. She ended last season with 283 points and 166 rebounds. She was first-team all-conference and all-state.
"It's amazing to have signed with a DI college for a full-ride scholarship; its something most people didn't believe would happen. I put in my time to achieve this, but I still have much more to put in with Utah State to get even better. I can't wait," Thompson said.
Thompson played club basketball for the Idaho Flash under current Utah State assistant coach Stu Sells.
"Our basketball family at Wood River High School, the community, her teammates and the staff are just incredibly proud of her and excited that she has found such a great fit for herself, and Utah State has found a great fit with her. We are excited to watch her grow and progress on and off the floor at Utah State. The Utah State basketball community will be really excited to have found a player with such potential. Her upside is unlimited," Benson said.
Williams hails from Syracuse, Utah and attends Syracuse High School where she was coached by Robert Reisbeck. As a junior, she averaged 16 points and eight rebounds per game. She also added five assists and three steals per game for the Titans. The versatile player helped Syracuse to a 23-1 record and a second-place finish in the 5A State Tournament.
"Makenlee is a fierce competitor that has an infectious passion for Utah State. Her Aggie blue blood, habit for winning, athleticism and range are all things that we love," Pebley said.
"I've always dreamed of playing college basketball and signing a NLI. Tonight all my dreams came true! I am so excited to be a Aggie and be a part of a incredible team! I couldn't have dreamed any better than Utah State," Williams said.
Williams was named second-team all-state as a junior by the Deseret News and the Salt Lake Tribune. She was first-team all-area by the Standard Examiner her junior season. The guard forward also earned all-state honorable-mention honors by the Deseret News and the Salt Lake Tribune as a sophomore.
"We are very proud and excited for Makenlee as she starts a new chapter of her life with Utah State. We wish her the best and know she will do an excellent job of representing Syracuse," Reisbeck said. Pebley and the current Aggies are back in action on Saturday, Nov. 19 at UC Irvine at 3 p.m. (MT).
Fans can follow USU women's basketball at http://twitter.com/UTAHSTATEofmind and Utah State athletics at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics.
Live stats will be available for most Utah State women's basketball games through the women's basketball page on www.utahstateaggies.com, by clicking on GameTracker in the current events box. All home games can be viewed by clicking on "Watch Live", while they can be heard by clicking on "Listen Live." Both can be accessed on www.utahstateaggies.com on the front page or the women's basketball page.
For tickets contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office at (435)797-0305 or at 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) for more information or visit the Utah State athletic web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
2011-12 Utah State Women's Basketball Signees Haylee Thompson, 6-1, F, Hailey, Idaho (Wood River HS) Makenlee Williams, 6-0, F/G, Syracuse, Utah (Syracuse HS)
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