FAYETTEVILLE – Olathe, Kan., forward Morgan Boyd and Springfield, Mo., post Ashlea Williams have signed their national letters of intent to play women’s basketball at the University of Arkansas, Lady Razorback head coach Susie Gardner announced today.
The signing of Boyd and Williams provides Arkansas with two of the top recruits from neighboring states to go with yesterday’s in-state tipoff to the 2006 recruiting season. The Lady’Backs signed the state of Arkansas’ current player of the year 6-2 forward Whitney Zachariason of Little Rock’s Central Arkansas Christian and one of the nation’s top point guards and a Street & Smith preseason high school all-America honorable mention 5-6 Shanita Arnold of Fort Smith.
“Our 2006 recruiting class continues to build, and we couldn’t be happier,” Gardner said. “We have had the chance to see both Morgan and Ashlea participate in our summer camps, and I know they are both extremely excited to become Lady Razorbacks.”
Boyd, a 6-1 wing player, was one of the top scorers in the Kansas City metro area with 19.3 ppg. A Gatorade finalist and McDonald’s All-America nominee in 2006, the versatile big guard was named the Kansas City area’s top defensive player. Along with her scoring, Boyd averaged 6.6 rpg, 3.9 apg, 2.3 spg and led the Lady Hawks at the free throw line with 85%.
“She is a long, lean wing that can shoot the three or put it down on the floor and drive,” Gardner said. “The more we saw her play, the more we became excited about her talent. Morgan is a wing that can become a great defensive player in the SEC and give us a scoring threat with a big guard.”
Williams, a 6-2 post player, is also a defensive force, setting the school records for season and career blocked shots at Hillcrest High for coach Jenni Hopkins. Williams averaged 11.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg and 2.1 blocks last year for HHS as the Hornets reached the state quarterfinals in Class 5. She also helped Kansas City Keys achieve a third-place national finish at the 16-U national.
“Ashlea is very athletic, and is defense and rebound minded as a player,” Gardner said. “There is no doubt that she will be a great player in our system.”
Along with her HHS career record 130 blocked shots, Williams also holds the school records for season (60.4%) and career (52%) field goal percentage.
Arkansas anticipates closing the 2006 early signing period with a final signee Friday morning. The Lady Razorbacks open the 2006-07 season Friday night at Clemson. Tipoff is 6 p.m. central, and the game can be heard live over the Lady Razorback Radio Network and LADYBACKS.COM.