Cheney, Wash. – Eastern Washington University Women's Basketball head coach Wendy Schuller has announced the signings of four high school seniors to National Letters of Intent Thursday, Nov. 12.
Kianna Baker (Tulare, Calif./Tulare Union HS), Amy Hartleroad (Dallas, Texas/Plano West HS), Uriah Howard (Oakland, Calif./Miramonte HS) and Symone Starks (Lone Tree, Colo./Highlands Ranch HS) will join the Eagles following standout prep careers. The quartet will graduate this spring and come to Cheney in time for Eastern's 2016-17 season.
"This group really covers a lot of bases for us," said Schuller. "There's a lot of athleticism in the group, and some really nice size. We've brought in a lot of scoring ability and players that are able to play a number of different positions for us.
"This class has the ability to really make some noise down the road," Schuller continued. "They all come from great programs, and they know how to win. That's something that goes a long way. I'm excited about their futures, and I think all four are perfect fits for what this program is about."
Baker, a 6-4 post player, was a First Team All-East Yosemite League selection as a junior after averaging 10.1 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.6 blocks per game for the Redskins. A three-year letter winner in basketball at Tulare Union High School, she averaged a double-double as a sophomore in 2013-14, averaging 13.9 points and 13.9 rebounds per game.
Baker chose to attend EWU because of its location in the Pacific Northwest and because of its exercise science program. She plans to major in exercise science with the goal of becoming a cardiac rehabilitation specialist.
"Kianna is a nice athlete and has great size," Schuller said. "She was one of the higher-ranked post players in the state of California, and her size really addresses a need that we have. She gives us that presence that we need in the paint."
Hartleroad, a 6-0 forward, has earned three varsity letters in basketball at Plano West High School, helping her team to a spot in the Texas 6A State Tournament as a sophomore. She also played a crucial role in advancing her team to the regional finals of the state tournament as a junior.
Hartleroad chose to come to Eastern because she had a great connection with the women's basketball coaching staff and the players on her visit and found the campus to be the perfect fit in terms of size and academics. She intends to major in business or marketing and hopes to work for a professional sports team in a marketing capacity.
"Amy is the perfect example of a stretch four," said Schuller. "She's a really skilled player who shoots the three well and can handle and pass the ball well. She fits the mold of players we love having in this program because she's a great student and loves working on her game."
Howard, a 5-11 forward, collected First Team All-Diablo Foothill Athletic League honors as a junior. She led Miramonte High School to North Coast Section Division III titles as a sophomore and junior and back-to-back runs to the semifinals of the California Interscholastic Federation Northern California Open Division Tournament.
Howard chose to come to Eastern because she felt extremely welcomed and safe away from home on her visits to campus, along with the competitive spirit of the women's basketball coaching staff. Howard plans to major in criminal justice.
"Uriah committed to us early in the recruiting process," said Schuller. "She's a great athlete, and she plays really hard. She comes from one of the best high school programs in California and one of the best club programs in the country, so she's been very well coached. She does a lot of things well."
Starks, a 5-5 guard, is a three-year letter winner in basketball at Highlands Ranch High School. She was the Continental League Player of the Year as a junior last season, scoring in double figures in 18 games while averaging 11.8 points per game. She was also named an all-state selection by MaxPreps following an impressive junior season that culminated in an appearance in the Colorado High School Athletic Association Great 8.
Starks was invited to USA Under-17 tryouts following her sophomore season and has played in two tournaments put on by USA Basketball.
Starks chose to attend Eastern because of the beautiful campus and the women's basketball coaching staff. She intends to major in either exercise science or forensic science with the desire to become either a sports rehabilitation specialist or a forensic scientist.
"Symone also comes from great high school and club programs," Schuller said. "She is a great kid with a bubbly personality. She's the kind of player you love to have at the point guard spot that you know is going to lead and have a winner's mentality."
The Eagles tip off their 2015-16 campaign this Friday, Nov. 13, at home versus Eastern Oregon at 11 a.m. PST.