By Kaitlin Merkel
The Gophers women’s basketball team signed four recruits to National Letters of Intent on Nov. 11. The incoming signees are part of the second recruiting class Minnesota head coach Marlene Stolling’s has fully overseen and will join the team for the 2016-2017 season.
The four recruits include two guards and two forwards: guard Gadiva Hubbard from Virginia Beach, Va., twin sisters and forwards Taiye and Kehinde Bello from Southfield, Mich., and guard Jasmine Brunson from Queens, N.Y.
Hubbard is a 5-foot-9-inch guard from Princess Anne high school and is listed the No. 27 guard in the nation by ESPN.com. She led her high school to consecutive state titles her sophomore and junior seasons and averaged 16.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.8 steals and 2.9 assists per game her junior year.
“[Hubbard] is a pure scorer who will thrive in our high-octane offense,” Stollings said, per the team’s official website. “Her toughness on the court and her high basketball IQ are innate qualities that fit perfectly in our system.”
Taiye Bello is a 6-foot-2-inch-forward from Southfield-Lathrup high school and is listed the No. 20 forward in the nation by ESPN.com. Bello averaged 10.6 points per game and led her high school team with nine rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game as a junior.
“[Taiye Bello] gives us outstanding speed, length and versatility. Her athleticism is elite and she has the ability to score in a variety of ways around the basket, as well as in transition,” Stollings said, per the team’s official website.
Kehinde Bello is a 6-foot-2-inch forward from Southfield-Lathrup high school, where she played with her twin sister and fellow Gophers commit Taiye Bello. Kehinde Bello is ranked as the No. 45 forward in the nation by ESPN.com and averaged 6.3 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game her junior year.
“[Kehinde Bello] is an elite athlete who thrives in an up-tempo system,” Stollings said, per the team’s official website. “She brings a strong ability to defend and rebound.”
Brunson is a 5-foot-7-inch guard from Mary Louis Academy and averaged 16 points, six rebounds, four assists and three steals per game in her junior season.
“[Brunson’s] grit, toughness and relentless drive to succeed … fit our culture,” Stollings said, per the team’s official website. “[She] possesses strong ball handling skills, a high basketball IQ and the ability to score. Her quickness is a tremendous asset on both ends of the floor.”