Thompson

Virginia women’s basketball coach Tina Thompson’s first recruiting class includes six players.

Virginia women’s basketball coach Tina Thompson unveiled her first recruiting class with the Cavaliers on Thursday.

Thompson, who is heading into her second season at UVa, hopes the six-person class can help the Wahoos become a contender in the ultra competitive ACC and return to the NCAA Tournament.

“I am filled with extreme excitement about our first recruiting class,” said Thompson, who went 12-19 in her first season in Charlottesville. “They are a fun group of young ladies, full of toughness, talent and pure grit. They have something to prove and we are here to help them do just that.”

The class consists of Carole Miller (Alexandria), Meg Jefferson (Sydney, Australia), Kylie Kornegay-Lucas (Camden, Delaware), Dylan Horton (Los Angeles), Yanni Hendley (Wilmington, Delaware) and Shemera Williams (Milwaukee).

In addition to the incoming recruiting class, redshirt sophomore Dani Lawson also becomes eligible for the Cavaliers this upcoming season.

Lawson transferred to Virginia from Purdue last July, but sat out last season due to NCAA transfer rules.

Miller, a 6-foot guard from Northern Virginia, was ranked the No. 82 player in the country by ESPN and No. 21 at her position. She was a three-time VHSL first team all-state selection at Edison High School in Alexandria and scored more than 1,000 points in her prep career. Miller helped the Eagles reach back-to-back VHSL Class 5 state championship games and averaged 20 points and nine rebounds per game during her senior season.

“Carole Miller is the type of player that every team wants to have,” Thompson said. “She will make whatever contribution necessary to help her team win. She has the ability to fill the need. It’s a gift.”

Miller will be joined in the Cavaliers’ backcourt by Williams, a 5-8 guard who is ranked as the No. 54 player in the country by ESPN. The two-time USA Today Wisconsin Player of the Year and 2019 The Associated Press State Player of the Year led the nation in scoring her junior season, averaging 39.9 points per game.

During her final season at Milwaukee Academy of Science, she averaged 32.5 points, 10.3 rebounds, 8.5 assists and 4.5 steals per game. She is the No. 2 all-time scorer in Wisconsin girls high school history with 3,120 career points.

Williams originally committed to Marquette, but re-opened her commitment after head coach Carolyn Kieger decided to leave the Golden Eagles for Penn State.

“Shemera Williams is a crafty guard with tons of versatility,” Thompson said. “She has the ability to score in bunches. But the best part of her game and highly underrated is her ability to facilitate and make the players around her better. She is one of those talents that other players love to play with.”

Jefferson is a 6-3 forward from Australia who is rated No. 33 at her position in the 2019 class by ESPN. She played high school basketball at St. Columba’s Catholic College, where she was named Sportswoman of the Year in 2018. At the club level, Jefferson helped her teams to the New South Wales state championships in 2015 and 2017 with a runner-up finish in 2016.

Horton, a 5-9 guard, helped lead her Redondo Union squad to the 2018 California Division 2 state championship and three-consecutive Bay League championships. She averaged 16 points, four assists and four rebounds per game her senior season.

“Dylan is very steady and has a complete game,” Thompson said. “She can contribute to the game in several ways, just scratching the surface of her abilities. Her ability to stretch the floor and get to the basket is an asset.”

Kornegay-Lucas, a 5-10 guard who is ranked No. 28 at her position, played her senior season at New Hope Academy in Landover Hills, Maryland, leading the squad to the Geico High School National Championship. She scored 11 points in the final.

Hendley helped lead Ursuline Academy to the Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association state title in both 2016 and 2017 before transferring to Riverdale Baptist and playing on the 2018 Independent School national championship squad.

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