Last year, the women’s basketball team relied on its veterans’ prowess. This year, however, a surplus of youth will be heading up the program after the departure of five seniors from the team.
Contributing to the budding talent will be the 2019 recruiting class to replace the departing seniors.
This year’s recruiting class under Head Coach Tony Bozzella features multiple lethal scorers from their respective high schools. The group is also guard heavy, as four of the five recruits will either play the one or two positions. Most importantly, this group reflects the outlook Bozzella has for his unit.
“First off, I want to give my staff a lot of credit for putting a class this impressive together,” Bozzella said through Seton Hall Athletics. “We’re making a commitment to our style of play, which is an up-tempo, fast-paced ball-sharing offense and aggressive defense. These five additions all bring the attributes we will need to build on our style and continue to cultivate its success. They are also all wonderful young women who will thrive in the classroom as well as on the court.”
The headliner of the class will be the only non-guard of the group, Kailah Harris. Harris is a 6-foot-1 forward out of Ossining High School in New York, where she was former teammates with current Pirate and First Team All-Big East forward, Shadeen Samuels. Seton Hall was the first school to offer Harris when Bozzella extended a scholarship before her freshman season. Although the scholarship was offered prior to her freshman season, Harris had already been on her varsity team, as she has played for Ossining since eighth grade. Harris was a consistent scorer in the high school ranks, improving her point per game average every season. She finished her senior season with 23.9 points per game and joined the 1,000-point club as a junior. Harris is also a threat for a double-double whenever she touches the hardwood, as she averaged 12.9 rebounds her senior season and finished with an average of at least 10 rebounds since her sophomore season.
McKenna Hofschild, a 5-foot-2 guard out of Minnesota also knows how to stroke the ball. Hofschild holds the state record for most points in a game with 63, a record that had not been broken for 37 years. Like Harris, Hofschild has played varsity basketball since eighth grade. She scored over 2,000 career points at Prior Lake High School and owns the school record in points, three pointers, and most points in a season. She averaged 23.8 points per game her senior season.
Mya Jackson is another program all-time leading scorer from Wilmington High School in Ohio. She is only one of two athletes from her school to surpass 2,000 points. Helping her achieve the record was her efficient shooting performances in her junior and senior seasons, where she averaged 22.4 and 25 points, respectively.
Rounding out the class are guards Victoria Keenan and Lauren Park-Lane. Keen comes from Northampton High School in Pennsylvania where she holds her school record for most three pointers in a career and averaged 18.4 points her senior season. Park-Lane spent a year of prep at the Sanford school in Delaware, where Bozzella noticed her due to her high motor. He expects Park-Lane to “lead by example” once she arrives on campus.
With the new class and emerging underclassmen talent in the program, the loss of veteran players could be made up for in the long run with the talent and abilities of the newest recruiting class.
Robert Fallo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @robert_fallo.