Nov. 14, 2007
SPOKANE, Wash. - Gonzaga University women's basketball head coach Kelly Graves has announced the signing of two players to national letters of intent Wednesday, the first day of the early signing period. Joining the Bulldogs next fall will be Kayla Standish, a 6-2 forward from Ellensburg High School in Ellensburg, Wash., and 6-2 center Shannon Reader from Lake Oswego High School in Lake Oswego, Ore.
Standish is one of the most highly decorated female athletes in the history of the state of Washington and is perhaps the most highly recruited women's basketball player to sign at Gonzaga. Rated among the best forwards and top players in the nation by HoopGurlz.com, Standish averaged 22.3 points and over 10.0 rebounds per game as a sophomore and 18.6 points and over 10.0 rebounds per game as a junior in leading Ellensburg High to back-to-back state tournament appearances. She was named All-Central Washington Athletic Conference and All-State three times. Standish was also a 2006 first-team 3-A State Tournament honoree and 2007 2-A Tournament Most Valuable Player. A standout all-around athlete, Standish is considered among the best volleyball players in the state and has placed in the top four at state each year since her freshman year in both the 100-meter high hurdles and the triple jump.
"I think, hands down, Kayla is the best basketball player as well as the best athlete in the state of Washington this year," stated Graves. "With the ability she has to play from inside and out, Kayla should have an immediate impact on our team, along the lines of a Heather Bowman, Janelle Bekkering and Courtney Vandersloot, from the day she sets foot on the GU campus. She is such a versatile player as she can shoot the three-pointer as well as kill you at the block, all of which should make her a matchup headache for our opponents. We are thrilled that someone of her abilities and character will be joining our program. This is an exciting day for GU basketball fans."
Reader comes to Gonzaga fresh off a tremendous season at Lake Oswego High where she helped lead the Lakers to the Oregon State Tournament semi-finals. Playing primarily a backup role behind two Division I post players, Reader excelled as a tremendous defender, rebounder and energy player. As a freshman and sophomore at Century High School, she was twice named to the Metro All-League team after averaging 13.0 points, 12.0 rebounds and 14.0 points, 13.0 rebounds per game as a sophomore and freshman, respectively.
"Shannon is an important recruit for us because she fills a real need within our program," explained Graves. "She is a hard-working post player who will give us added strength and depth and a physical presence inside. As do all our post players, she can also step out and knock down the perimeter jumper and she has the determination to improve her game. A great leader, Shannon understands the team first concept as was evident when she left a school where she was a prolific scorer and rebounder to one where she has played more of a backup role, all of which shows what great character she has and the quality person she is."