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Kodak All-American Ervin signs with Arkansas

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Kodak All-American Ervin signs with Arkansas

FAYETTEVILLE – Sophomore post player 6-3 Lauren Ervin signed her national letter of intent to play next season for the University of Arkansas, women’s basketball head coach Susie Gardner announced today. “If I had a job description of what we need in a post player for the SEC, Lauren would be the perfect fit.” Gardner said. “She can run the floor, has great hands, good timing for blocks, quickness for rebounding and the ability to play post defense at the highest level.” The junior college Kodak All-American and southern California junior college player of the year got the Lady Razorbacks’ spring signing period off to a fast start. Arkansas signed four high school players during the fall signing period, including a WBCA High School All-America honorable mention player. “As a coach, I’ve had some great persons and some great players in my 10 years, but Lauren is one of my favorites,” Mt. San Antonio College head coach Laura Beeman said. “Her love of the game is great and she epitomized team. She has a soft touch with the ball and the ability to run the break, but the way she loved her teammates and cared for the team is what set her apart. Kodak All-America says it all for her athleticism, but she is an outstanding person. I’m thrilled for Lauren and for Arkansas.” Averaging a double-double for Mt. SAC this past season with just over 21 ppg and 13 rpg, Ervin drove the Mountaineers to a 36-2 record and the California juco title. In the championship game against San Joaquin Delta, the 6-3 post poured in 23 points off 9-of-11 from the field with eight rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks. She was named the MVP of the state juco tournament and of her juco conference this spring. “Lauren has an intense hunger to return to playing Division I basketball,” Gardner said. “In junior college, she was a team player that focused on her team’s goals first. When we would call to ask about how a game went this year, she was never aware of her own stats, but she knew the score of the game. It was always about her team’s success.” Coming out of Inglewood, Calif., Ervin was considered one of the nation’s top recruits, ranked the number two player in the country by Blue Star and All Game Sports and No. 6 by All-Star Girls Report. Averaging an impressive 24 ppg and 18 rpg for Inglewood High as a senior, she initially signed to play for Kansas under former Jayhawk coach Marian Washington. She was one of USA TODAY’s top seven sophomores in 2001 while averaging 20 ppg at Artesia High in Lakewood, Calif.“In spite of all her accolades, Lauren is a humble person, but she is passionate about improving her game to be able to play in the SEC,” Gardner said. “She has the desire to become an exceptional player, and welcomes the challenge to be that kind of player in the SEC.” During her one season at Kansas, Ervin played 24 games as a freshman, leading the Jayhawks in rebounding with 6.8 rpg and field goal percentage with 51.5%. She was named to the Dallas Morning News’ Big 12 all-freshman team. One of the top scoring and rebounding players in the state of California, Ervin’s resume also includes the 2002 USA Women’s Youth Development Festival. She earned several in-season tournament MVP honors along with her final state tournament MVP award this year at Mt. SAC. With the addition of Ervin, the Lady Razorbacks are building what could become one of the best single recruiting classes since the mid-1990s. The Lady Razorbacks signed 6-2 forward Tanisha Smith of Kansas City, Mo., Lincoln Prep; 6-3 post Ashley Wilson of Byhalia, Miss.; 5-8 guard Charity Ford of Arlington, Texas, Seguin; and 5-8 guard Kendra Roberts of Fort Smith, Ark., Northside. The recruiting continues for the Lady Razorbacks who anticipate further announcements later during the spring signing period.



Sports Category : Basketball (W)