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Nov. 16, 2007
SPARTANBURG, S.C. - USC Upstate women's basketball head coach Tammy George has announced the signing of two players to National Letters of Intent on Friday afternoon before this evening's match at Charleston Southern. The Spartans will welcome Lesley Daniel (Collinwood, Tenn./Collinwood), a 5-5 point guard, and Kendra Wallace (Hurricane, W.V./Nitro), a 5-9 shooting guard, to the USC Upstate family beginning with the 2008-09 school year.
"We're very excited to welcome these two players to the Upstate basketball family," George said. "They both have great basketball backgrounds, have shown great work ethics and are the perfect fit for our program as we try to build towards competing for Atlantic Sun championships."
Daniel, a 5-5 point guard, has played the role of a true point guard well for Collinwood High School under coach Jason Morris. Daniel, during her career, has helped lead Collinwood to the Class A State Tournament as a junior along with Middle Tennessee State commitment Abby Andrews, a Miss Tennessee finalist. The Trojans finished the 2006-07 season with a 30-5 record, falling in the first round of the state tournament to Trinity. In the game, Daniel posted 10 points, three assists and no turnovers. During her junior season, Daniel averaged 14.5 points per game, helping her earn Second Team All-Times-Daily honors and All-6A Region honors.
During her three years at Collinwood, Daniel has averaged 11.7 points, 2.9 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.1 assists per game. She has shot 46 percent from the field and led the Trojans to a 71-21 overall record in the past three years and a state ranking as high as seventh during her junior year.
"We're very excited to bring in Lesley," George said. "She comes from a great winning tradition at Collinwood and as a point guard in their program, she has shown great leadership ability throughout her high school career. She will be able to do some nice things for our program."
Wallace will finish her prep career as one of the most accomplished basketball players in West Virginia history for coach Scott Tinsley at Nitro High School. A two-time First Team All-State selection and one-time second-team selection in class AAA, has earned three all-conference and three all-county selections. A proven scorer, Wallace averaged 17.3 points per game as a freshman, 24.1 games as a sophomore and 25.5 points as a junior, earning the Teays Physical Therapy Center Cager of the Year award. Wallace posted two 40-point performances as a senior, including a career-high 45 against Riverside, and added five other 30-point games. She also hit nine 3-pointers in the game.
Also a competitor in summer basketball, she played AAU basketball with coach Greg Hammond's West Virginia Spirit. She has competed at several elite showcases, including the adidas Deep South Classic, the Eastern Kentucky Lady Colonel Camp and the Liberty University Individual Elite Camp. At both Eastern Kentucky and Liberty, Wallace won the camp's hot shot competitions. Wallace is also active out of the gym, as she was inducted into the National Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta in the spring of 2006.
"Kendra is a great kid," George said. "She can put up some big numbers on a consistent basis. She has a great outside shot and the ability to play a couple different positions on the court. She'll give us much more depth around the perimeter during the next four years."
USC Upstate is in its first year of competition at the Division I level and in the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Spartans made four appearances in the NCAA Division II Tournament during 17 years at that level, with the last appearance coming in 2005, Coach George's first year with the program.