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Eastern Washington women’s basketball adds five players to roster

UPDATED: Wed., June 6, 2018, 6:23 p.m.

Eastern Washington University women’s basketball coaches Wendy Schuller and Bryce Currie, right, guide their team against Idaho, Friday, Jan. 12, 2018 in Cheney, Wash. (Dan Pelle / The Spokesman-Review)

Eastern Washington women’s basketball coach Wendy Schuller has signed five new players, bringing this year’s recruiting class to eight.

“Overall, the late signees in addition to our early signing class bring a wealth of size and talent to our team,” Schuller said Wednesday.

The late signees include Denver transfer Leya DePriest and high school graduates Tessa Burke, Trinity Golder, Tatiana Reese and Jessica McDowell-White.

“Coupled with the phenomenal team that we have coming back, I am really excited to get on the floor with all of them this summer and can’t wait for next season,” said Schuller, entering her 18th season.

The new additions join Grace Kirscher, Milly Knowles and Bella Cravens, who inked National Letters of Intent in November, bringing the 2018 class to eight.

The Eagles went 17-14 overall and 12-6 in the Big Sky Conference last season, but lose career scoring leader Delaney Hodgins and starter Mariah Cunningham to graduation.

Also, starting point guard Symone Starks left the team for personal reasons during midseason, while redshirt freshman Amy Hartleroad has quit to focus on her studies and true freshman Lea Wolff has returned to her family in Germany.

The Eagles return eight players from last year’s team.

Burke, a 5-foot-8 guard, averaged 24.4 points at Loyola Sacred Heart High School in Missoula. She also was a four-year letter winner in track and soccer.

DePriest, a 6-3 post from Palmer, Alaska, played 35 games during the past two years at Denver while averaging 5.0 points. Under NCAA rules, she must sit out next season.

Golder, a 5-11 guard from Sandpoint, averaged 14 points and almost five rebounds at Bonners Ferry High School and Sandpoint High School.

McDowell-White, a 5-6 point guard from Brisbane, Australia, averaged 5.3 points and 6.1 rebounds for Australia’s U-18 squad.

Another incoming point guard is the 5-5 Reese from East Menlo Park, California, where she scored 1,775 career points for the Woodside Priory School.

The Eagles added more height with 6-3 post Cravens of Laie, Hawaii, who led Maryknoll High School to four straight league titles while averaging 9.2 points and shooting 66 percent from the field.

The 6-foot Kirscher, a McDonald’s All-American nominee, is coming off back-to-back Inland Empire League Most Valuable Player awards with Sandpoint. She averaged 16 points and five rebounds as a junior.

Knowles is a 6-foot power forward from England, where she won regional titles at the U-13 and U-15 levels.

Eastern also has a coaching vacancy following the departure last month of assistant Jodi Page.