WMU News

Women's basketball signs six recruits for 2002

Nov. 27, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- The Western Michigan University women's basketball team has announced that it had signed six high school players to National Letters of Intent.

Tamekka Broyles (Grand Rapids, Mich./Union), Kate Verseput (Mason, Mich.), Shannon Jackson (Kalamazoo/Central), Shaylen Jackson (Kalamazoo/Central), Lindsey Brown (Kalamazoo/Central), and Andrea Thelen (Fowler, Mich./Pewamo-Westphalia) have signed letters to attend Western Michigan and play basketball beginning in the fall of 2002.

"This class is perhaps the culmination of five years of being at Western Michigan," said head coach Ron Stewart. "We were able to put together an outstanding group that will help us establish upper level finishes in the MAC. They have the ability to shoot the ball from the outside, play well on the inside, and push the ball up the court in an up-tempo fashion.

"There is no doubt that the group is one that the fans at University Arena are going to be excited to watch."

Considered by some to be the quickest player in the state of Michigan, Broyles' quickness makes her a disruptive defensive player. Her 3-point shooting has improved and she is skilled at driving to the basket.

"Tamekka is quicker than any point guard in our conference," said Stewart. "She is an outstanding penetrator and has also shown she is capable of shooting from 3-point range. Tamekka is very hard to guard and has put her high school team in position to compete for a championship."

The 6-1 Verseput continues a family tradition of playing basketball in Kalamazoo. Her older brother, Adam, played at Kalamazoo College. She was a four-year starter for Mason High School. Her teams won three district championships and two Capital Circuit Conference championships. Verseput earned all-state honorable mention last season and was all-CCC each of the past three seasons.

"Kate is a very good shooter and also an outstanding playmaker," said Stewart. "She knows the game and helps others improve their game. She is able to play more than one position and comes from a program with a winning tradition."

A four-year letterwinner in hoops, Shaylen was rated as one of the top 20 players in the state of Michigan by the Detroit Free Press and was sixth in Prep Spotlight Magazine. A 6-1 post player, she was named to the all-conference roster twice and was a two-year starter. Last season she led the team in steals, assists, and blocked shots.

"(Shaylen) is a skilled athlete with good shooting range," said Stewart. "She has great size with the chance to be very successful at a variety of positions in the MAC."

Shannon Jackson was named a captain for the 2001 season. She earned the hustle award, and was named to the Big 16 Central Division all-conference team honorable mention, averaging 10 rebounds per game.

"Shannon is an extremely hard worker and a solid athlete with great desire and outstanding rebounding skills."

Brown, a 6-2 center, was a First Team All-Big 16 Conference selection for the Maroon Giants. She averaged 15 points and 12 rebounds per game in her senior season, which included a 28 point effort.

"Lindsey has a great presence in the high or low post," said Stewart. "She knows the game and works hard. She has great hands and finishes extremely well."

Thelen has been named to the Central Michigan Athletic Conference First Team all four seasons of her high school career. The 5-10 shooting guard is the second girls' player in Pewamo-Westphalia High School to score over 1,000 points in her career. For her career, she is an 86 percent free throw shooter. Thelen has helped the Pirates capture back-to-back CMAC championships and win 48 consecutive regular-season contests. Pewamo-Westphalia is 66-6 in league play the last three seasons combined. Last year PWHS advanced to the state semifinals, winning regional and district crowns in the process. Thelen is coached by Paul Hungerford.

"Andrea is a gym rat who understands the game very well," said Stewart. "She plays to win and comes from a winning program. She is one of the best 3-point shooters in the state."

For more information, visit the Broncos on the Web at <www.wmubroncos.com>.

Media contact: Geoff Brown, 616 387-4138, geoffrey.brown@wmich.edu

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