FROM PULLMAN -- We filed a short item earlier today on Washington State's early basketball signees, but also wanted to make sure we got something on the blog before the clock strikes midnight. Below is WSU's release announcing the signings of guard Ikenna Iroegbu and forwards Josh Hawkinson and Tanner Lancona, with comments from coach Ken Bone about each player.
Josh Hawkinson (6-9, 220, PF, Shoreline, Wash./Shorewood HS) averaged 18.0 points per game during the 2011-12 season at Shorewood HS for the Thunderbirds. Hawkinson was named to the 3A All-Western Conference First Team as a junior as he led the team to a 17-6 overall record and a 13-3 league finish.
“Josh will be a great asset to the team,” Bone said. “He is an extremely skilled passer that has the ability to shoot from the perimeter. In addition, he’s a tremendous student and we look forward to helping him continue to develop.”
Ikenna ‘Ike’ Iroegbu (6-2, 190, G, Elk Grove, Calif./Oak Hill Academy) joined Oak Hill Academy and 2012 Naismith Coach of the Year, Steve Smith, at the start of his junior year. That year Iroegbu helped the Warriors to a 44-0 record, No. 1 national ranking, and a national championship. Prior to playing at Oak Hill, Iroegbu played at Franklin High School in Elk Grove, Calif., where he averaged 4.5 points, 3.8 assists, and 3.1 rebounds per game as a sophomore. During the 2010-11 season, the Wildcats went 10-0 in the Delta Valley League, while Iroegbu averaged 7.8 points in the final four games of the season, including a 12-point performance, going 5-of-8 from the field in the final game.
“Ike is a very athletic and quick combo guard who we hope can make an immediate impact here at WSU,” Bone said. “He’s a good shooter and scorer and great in transition. We enjoyed having his older brother, Chuks, here as a walk-on last season and know he’s a great young man from an outstanding family.”
Tanner Lancona (6-8, 225, PF, Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif./Tesoro HS) played for coach Steve Garrett and the Titans during his junior season, leading the team to a 16-13 record after averaging 14.2 points per game. During the 2011-12 season, Lacona averaged 15.5 points per game over the final four games including a season-high 29 points against El Toro High School in a 66-51 win. As a sophomore, Lacona was named to the South Coast League Second Team and was named an All-Southern Section selection after his junior campaign.
“Tanner will be another good addition to our frontcourt as a stretch-four,” Bone said. “At 6-8 he can shoot the three, but he is also skilled in the paint. His ability to pass the ball shows what good of a feel he has for the game.”