WATERLOO, Ont. (June 7, 2016) - Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks women's basketball head coach Paul Falco will have six new additions next season as he officially announced the 2016-17 recruiting class on Wednesday.
“We are pleased to be adding a strong group of 2016 recruits to our core of returning veterans next year," said Coach Falco,"These young ladies will definitely give us a little more size and athleticism. They each have potential to significantly grow their game at the university level and with hard work along with a willingness to learn, I am confident they will succeed.”
One commit to the Golden Hawks roster for next September will be TAYANIA SIWEK-SMITH, a 6-2 athlete who plays post and hails from Oakville, Ont. Siwek-Smith comes to Laurier after a strong basketball career at Holy Trinity where she was honoured as a 2015 Halton All-Star in her Captain year.
"I chose Laurier because the other girls on the team were incredibly welcoming and I felt like it was a place where I could see myself succeed both academically and in basketball," commented Siwek-Smith. "The double degree program was a good fit for me since I am interested both in computer science and business. I am excited to get to know my new teammates and to improve my game in the upcoming school year."
Joining the ranks as a guard for next season is Rachel Woodburn of Pickering, Ont., who brings a resume of tournament experience with her from her years at Pickering High and the Scarborough Blues. Woodburn was an OFSAA silver medalist in 2014, three-time LOSSA champions from 2013-15, and an Ontario Basketball Association (OBA) gold medalist in 2015. She was also nominated Team MVP in her final season at Pickering High.
"Laurier is a great fit for me because they have great science and arts programs as well as a competitive women's basketball team that matches my style of play," said Woodburn. "In the up-coming year I am looking forward to expanding my knowledge academically, improving my basketball skills and making new friends."
Three other recruits will join Rachel on the back court for the Hawks: Jill Condron of Oakville, Ont.; Brianna Iannazzo of Thornhill, Ont.; and Akashia Moore-Samuels of Milton, Ont.
Condron, a 5-10 guard, finished her last season with Holy Trinity and GTA West this season and earned Halton All-Star honours for 2015.
Guard Iannazzo leaves St. Robert High where she earned YRAA All-Star honours and Team MVP for 2015. Iannazzo also achieved an OBA gold in 2012 and silver the following year with the Oakville Vytis.
The final guard joining the team comes to Laurier from Jan Vanier Secondary where she earned Team MVP in both basketball and rugby in 2014 and 2015.
Falco's sixth recruit is Jessie Vasseur of London, Ont. The 6-1 athlete recruited for a post position was an OBA bronze medalist in 2016 with the London CYO, and earned Team MVP honours in 2013 and 2015 for her effort on the Banting Secondary School team.
With the recruiting class announced, the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks women's basketball team looks forward to the 2016-17 season and await the OUA official schedule release.