Seattle University women’s basketball head coach Joan Bonvicini announces the signing of five student-athletes who will attend school and compete for the Redhawks as part of the class of 2017. Wilma Afunugo (Plano, Texas), Kaylee Best (Seattle, Wash.), Tatiana Howard (Gardena, Calif.), Claire Metoyer (Desoto, Texas), and Alexis Montgomery (Beaverton, Ore.) will join the Seattle U women’s basketball team starting with the 2013-14 season.

“This is an outstanding group and my entire staff worked so hard on putting this class together,” said head coach Joan Bonvicini. “We have a mix of athleticism, size, and skill, and I think we fulfilled all our needs. More than anything, these are student-athletes who will do a great job representing Seattle U both on the court, in the classroom, and in the community as leaders.”


PG/G, Seattle, Wash./Lakeside School

A four-year varsity letterwinner from Lakeside School in Seattle, Wash., Kaylee Best averaged 12.4 ppg during her junior year and scored 21 points in the second half alone to help the team beat Nathan Hale in December 2011. Best is also a four-year varsity letterwinner in lacrosse and volleyball at Lakeside School and helped lead the Lions to 2010 and 2011 state tournament appearances in both basketball and lacrosse, and the 2012 state tournament in volleyball. She was named All-State and All-Conference for lacrosse, First-Team All-Metro for volleyball and basketball, and was named to the Seattle Times’ Top 5 Girls Athlete of the Year list. Her club team, Tree of Hope, won the Fila 64 Tournament in 2012 and placed highly at the End of the Trail tournament in Oregon.

Bonvicini on Best: “We’re very excited about Kaylee for several reasons; she’s local, she’s smart, she’s a leader, and she’s a multi-faceted athlete. She has competed at the state level not just in basketball, but in volleyball and lacrosse. Her ability as a leader can impact us right away and as a quick, smart, versatile player, she will compete and challenge for playing time immediately.”


PG/G, Beaverton, Ore./Beaverton

Alexis Montgomery, a four-year varsity letterwinner from Beaverton High School in Beaverton, Ore., helped lead her team to a 2011 state playoff appearance. In 2011-12, she averaged 18.7 ppg, and scored 37 points in a single game. She was named 2009 All-League Honorable Mention, 2010 Second Team All-League, 2011 First Team All-Metro, and a 2012 Player of the Week. At BHS, she was named Most Improved by her high school coaches from 2009-11. She also competed in track and field. At the club level, she has played with Team Concept for eight years, a team which was ranked No. 1 in the Northwest and No. 2 in the country.

Bonvicini on Montgomery: “Alexis is an outstanding point guard who absolutely loves the game. She has a chance to get playing time right away. She has played on the highest profile travel team in the country, Team Concept, and played in the state tournament last year as a junior. She’s smart and I think her best quality is that she makes the people around her better.”


C/F, Gardena, Calif./Junipero High School

Tatiana Howard, a varsity letterwinner from Junipero Serra High School in Gardena, Calif., led her team to a C.I.F. Championship behind a 30-4 record in 2011-12. In 2010-11, she averaged 8.6 ppg and 14.8 rpg, and recorded a single game career high 25 rebounds and 17 points that season. She was also named Most Outstanding (2010-11), as well as an Athletic Road Scholar (2009-12) at Junipero Serra. She has previously competed with the SoCal Compton Magics club team (2010), as well as Cal Spark (2012), West Coast All-Stars (2012), and Next Level (2012).

Bonvicini on Howard: “Tatiana is an outstanding athlete with great size. She plays for one of the best high school teams in southern California, and her team finished second in the state finals last year. She has great potential.”


G, Desoto, Texas/Canterbury Episcopal School

A four-year varsity starter from Canterbury Episcopal School in Desoto, Texas, Claire Metoyer has led the Cougars to three consecutive playoff appearances. The team, behind a 28-0 district record, has not lost a district contest over the past three seasons. Through her junior season, she has scored 1538 career points and was named the 2011 Canterbury Episcopal School Student-Athlete of the Year. Off the basketball court, she was also a four-year varsity volleyball starter and three-year varsity softball starter, and is a National Honor Society member. At the 2010 Fort Worth Trinity Valley Tournament, she scored 22 points and went 12-for-14 from the free-throw line in the championship game was named the All-Tournament MVP. At the club level, she has been a part of DFW Nike Elite since 2008, with whom she’s won multiple tournaments, including Nike Nationals in August, S.C. (2011, 2012) and Nike Tournament of Champions in Chicago, Ill. (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.

Bonvicini on Metoyer: ”Claire is smart, a very good perimeter shooter, and handles the ball well. She is also an outstanding student and will be a very important contributor for us. She is originally from New Orleans and moved to Dallas following Hurricane Katrina, so she is determined and knows how to overcome.”


F/C, Plano, Texas/Plano Senior High School

A three-year varsity starter from Plano Senior High School in Plano, Texas, Wilma Afunugo helped lead her team to a playoff appearance in 2011-12 as the leading scorer and rebounder (11 ppg). In 2009-2010, she was the Wildcats’ leading scorer with 22 points in a single game. Afunugo was named 2011-12 Academic All-District, All-Region, Plano All-Tournament Team, Sherman Holiday All-Tournament Team, and First-Team All-District. At Plano Senior High, she also has participated in mixed martial arts for four years and received a black belt. She played with the DFW Elite club team in the summer of 2012.

Bonvicini on Afunugo: “Wilma is an excellent athlete, and will play the high-post position. She can be an immediate contributor as a freshman, as she plays with a high-profile travel team and at one of the largest high schools in the country. We’re very excited about her.”
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