GU, EWU, WSU unveil new recruits
Gonzaga’s three-guard 2014 recruiting class made it official by signing letters-of-intent Wednesday, the first day of the early signing period.
Josh Perkins, a 6-foot-3 guard at Huntington (W.V.) Prep, headlines GU’s class, which includes Portland guard Silas Melson and southern California guard Bryan Alberts. Gonzaga’s class was ranked 37th by ESPN.com Wednesday morning and 38th by the afternoon.
Perkins, a Denver native, is a rated as a four-star recruit, 38th overall and the seventh best point guard by ESPN.com.
“Josh has a ton of potential at the point guard spot in that he can already shoot, he’s an excellent passer, is athletic enough and strong enough to get into the lane and make plays and finish at the rim,” coach Mark Few said. “He’s a guy we have some high expectations for and somebody that should be ready to play next year.”
“Silas is a guy who will remind people of Gary Bell Jr. a lot,” Few said. “He can really shoot, he’s already an excellent on-ball defender and he’s only 17.”
Alberts, a 6-5 guard from Village Christian High in the San Fernando Valley, is rated as the 50th-best point guard by ESPN.com, though he’ll likely play wing at GU.
“Bryan is a bigger guard, kind of what we’ve had in the past with Steven Gray and Matt Bouldin, that body type,” Few said. “He’s somebody who can shoot, drive and pass.”
The Bulldogs have a 2015 verbal commitment from Jesse Wade, a 6-foot guard from Kaysville, Utah, who is planning on serving a two-year LDS Mission before joining the program.
EWU men’s basketball
Guard Will Ferris, who guided Newport High School of Bellevue to a sixth-place state finish a year ago, has signed a letter of intent to attend Eastern Washington.
The 6-foot-1, 175-pound Ferris averaged 15.1 points per game as a junior to earn second team All-4A KingCo League honors. He averaged more than 20 points in the state tourney. It was the school’s best finish since 1967.
Eastern coach Jim Hayford said Ferris will be able to play either guard position.
“He plays the game with great intelligence, he’s a very skilled shooter and he is a natural leader,” Hayford said.
Entering his third year as a starter at Newport, Ferris is among the school’s career leaders for points (673 to currently rank 11th) and 3-point percentage (39 percent to rank fifth).
WSU women’s basketball
Washington State Cougars coach June Daugherty announced four players signed letters of intent to join the program next season.
Ashley Bolston, a 6-2 guard from Medford, Ore., averaged 15 points, seven rebounds and five assists last season. ESPN.com ranks her as the 106th overall prospect in the country.
Caila Hailey, a 5-9 guard from Inglewood, Calif., averaged 11.9 points, 8.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists last season. She is ranked as the No. 18 guard prospect in the country.
Nike McClure, a 6-3 forward from Tonino, Wash., was on the Adidas All-America Team as a junior as is rated No. 22 as a forward.
Pinelopi Pavlopoulou, a 5-8 guard from Athens, led her U-19 team to a first-place finish in the North Attica Conference.
Washington State coach Donnie Marbut announced 13 players signed letters of intent to join the Cougars next season.
The players are: Sam Boone (RHP, Shorline, Wash.), Derek Chapman (OF, Issaquah, Wash.), Alan Crowley (C, Clovis, Calif.), Daniel Fredrickson (OF, Woodinville, Wash.), Justin Hancock (OF/C, Kennewick), Weston Hatten (OF, Clovis, Calif.), Haakon Lande (SS, Snohomish, Wash.), Nick Leonard (RHP, Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Drew Lunde (LHP, Sammamish, Wash.), Shane Matheny (3B, Bremerton, Wash.), Tyler McDowell (OF/1B,LHP, Puyallup, Wash.), Scott Sunitsch (LHP, Federal Way, Wash.) and Ryan Walker (RHP, Arlington, Wash.).