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(L-R) Sam Jacobs, Whitney Ellenor and Courtney Bruce are three of the four new Hawks for next season
(L-R) Sam Jacobs, Whitney Ellenor and Courtney Bruce are three of the four new Hawks for next season
Women's Basketball announces 2011 recruits
WATERLOO, Ont. (May 27, 2011) - Laurier Women's Basketball and Head Coach PAUL FALCO are pleased to announce that four players have committed to the Golden Hawks for the 2011-12 season.

Joining the purple and gold in September will be guard Sam Jacobs of Enniskillen, Ont., post Whitney Ellenor of Pickering, Ont., forward Shelby Kurt of Waterloo, Ont., and guard Courtney Bruce of Orillia, Ont.

Jacobs joins the Hawks from Clarington Central Secondary School in Bowmanville, Ont., and will study Kinesiology beginning in the fall. Last year, the 5-10 guard was on exchange in Germany where she played for RS Jahn Munchen as well as the U19 squad Tus Bad Aibling, who finish fourth in the country. During her time at Clarington Central, Jacobs was a two-time team MVP and was named the 2010 Athlete of the Year. As well, she was honoured as a Face of the Future for her outstanding academic and athletic contributions to the school. 

"I am excited to be joining the Golden Hawks in the fall," commented Jacobs, a former member of the Durham Eclipse. "I chose the school mainly for the strength of the Kinesiology program, the small, community feel of the school and the success and style of play of the basketball program."

Ellenor is a transfer to Laurier from Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y., where she suited up for the Golden Griffins during the 2009-10 season. During her time at Canisius, Ellenor posted 40 minute averages of 9.9 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. Prior to playing at Canisius, the 6-2 post was at Pine Ridge Secondary School where she was a two-time team MVP and was a member of the honour roll during all four of her years at the school. Ellenor also played for the Scarborough Blues club team that captured the national championship in 2006.

"Laurier has a great basketball program," said Ellenor when asked of her decision to transfer to the school. "I felt that it was a team that I would fit in well with and has a coach that would help me develop my game. I also wanted to be a student at a school where the teacher to student ratio was small."

Joining Ellenor in the front court next season will be another transfer, 6-1 forward Shelby Kurt, who last season attended Simon Fraser University. A highly-regarded multi-sport athlete, Kurt attended nearby Waterloo Collegiate Institute where she helped guide the Vikings to an OFSAA bronze medal in 2009. A winner of multiple team and league MVP awards, Kurt played for the U15 Ontario provincial team as well as the KW Lightning club team with current Golden Hawks assistant coach Cal Keil.

The final member of this years class is Courtney Bruce, a 5-9 guard who captained Patrick Fogarty Catholic Secondary to three Georgian Bay regional championships and to the OFSAA finals in 2009. A four year honour roll student while at Patrick Fogarty, Bruce is also a long-time member of the Orillia Lakers club team where she was coached by her father Bob Bruce along with former Laurentian basketball standouts Ted Dongelmans and Stephanie Dongelmans (Harrison).

"With the addition of these four players, we have bolstered our size and athleticism," commented Head Coach PAUL FALCO. "They each have a real passion for the game and all four bring with them unique high-level experiences, which will be an excellent complement to our returning veterans."

The Golden Hawks are coming off their best season in team history as the team finished third in the OUA West with a 15-7 record, matching their best regular season record established in 2004-05. The team would go on to win the CIS West Regional over No. 3 Regina before earning a fifth place finish at the national championships, their best ever, thanks to victories over No. 4 Carleton and No. 6 Toronto.
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