May 13, 2014
MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State women's basketball head coach Jeff Mittie announced on Tuesday the signing of National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) All-American Antoinette Taylor to a National Letter of Intent (NLI) during the spring signing period. Taylor will join the Wildcats for the upcoming 2014-15 season and have two seasons to contribute to the lineup.
Taylor joins a pair of incoming freshmen that were signed during the fall signing period. The pair of signees from the fall were: Shaelyn Martin (Salina, Kan.) and Lauren Mertz (Overland Park, Kan.).
Taylor, who plans on majoring in criminology, joins the Wildcats from State Fair Community College in Sedalia, Missouri, where she capped her two-year career with NJCAA Division I First Team All-America honors. In the 2013-14 season, Taylor helped the Lady Roadrunners to a 21-9 overall record, a Region 16 Tournament title, a district title and the program's first appearance at the NJCAA Division I Women's Basketball National Championship since the 2010-11 season while earning Region 16 Most Valuable Player honors.
"Antoinette is a combo guard with excellent speed and we like her ability to slash to the rim," said Mittie about his newest back court player. "We feel like we need to continue to add players that can make plays in the open floor and can add some offense for us."
Taylor selected K-State over offers from Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Arkansas, TCU and Florida A&M.
During her sophomore season under the guidance of SFCC head coach Kevin Bucher, Taylor averaged a team-leading 15.4 points per game and notched 24 games in double figures including nine games of 20 or more points with a season-high of 29 points against College of Southern Idaho on Nov. 29, 2013. She also paced the squad with 3.4 assists per game, 2.1 steals and a .753 free throw percentage.
In her first season at State Fair in 2012-13, Taylor led State Fair in scoring with 14.2 points per game as the Lady Roadrunners carded a 21-10 record. She was second on the team in assists with 2.1 per contest and second in steals with 2.3 per game. She also hauled in 4.0 rebounds per game, which was second among the team's guards.
Taylor, a product of Gary, Ind., and Westside High, was a two-time All-Regional team selection and a two-time All-Area selection during a career that garnered her four letters with the Cougars. She helped Westside to four conference titles, two regional appearances and two sectional trips.
She also competed for Westside's track and field team and was a state champion in the indoor 4x400-meter relay and a state runner-up in the outdoor 4x400-meter relay.
Taylor will be the second player in the 47-year history of K-State women's basketball from the state of Indiana and ironically the second from Gary, joining Arneetrice Cobb a two-time letter winner in 1989 and 1990.
Under Mittie, Kansas State will feature a roster of 10 returning letter winners and three newcomers. The Wildcats will be paced in the 2014-15 season by seniors Ashia Woods and Haley Texada and
sophomores Breanna Lewis and Kindred Wesemann. Woods enters her final season with the Wildcats as K-State's top returning scorer following a career-high effort in 2013-14.
Texada has fully recovered from a stress fracture in her ankle that robbed her of the final 14 games of 2013-14 season. The native of Frisco, Texas, will look to return to her sophomore season form when she averaged a career-best 11.8 points per game.
Lewis anchored K-State's interior defense in her first season in Manhattan. The product of Milwaukee, Wis., registered a team-high 44 blocked shots which were the most by a K-State freshman since the 2005-06 season and tied for 10th in school history for a single season. She enters the 2014-15 season needing 21 blocked shots to move into the top-10 for blocked shots in a career.
Wesemann returns as K-State's top 3-point shooter. The native of Pleasant Hill, Mo., finished out her rookie campaign in 2013-14 with five straight games in double figures and averaged 13.8 points per game in that stretch. She ended the season with a career-best 18-point performance against Kansas in the 2014 Big 12 Championship first round.
K-State women's basketball season tickets for the 2014-15 season will be available for purchase beginning in June. The K-State Athletics Ticket Office is currently accepting $20 deposits on season tickets. Deposits can be made by calling 1-800-221-CATS or online www.kstatesports.com.
Kansas State 2014-15 Signees
Name, Height, Position, Hometown, School
Shaelyn Martin, 6-0, Guard, Salina, Kan., Salina Central HS
Lauren Mertz, 6-0, Forward, Overland Park, Kan., Blue Valley Northwest HS
Antoinette Taylor, 5-7, Guard, Gary, Ind., West Side HS/State Fair CC