Kentucky picked up a commitment on Sunday night from one of the nation’s top-100 players.
Deasia Merrill, a 6-foot-2 forward from Villa Rica, Ga., tweeted that she’s planning to play for Matthew Mitchell at Kentucky.
Merrill is the second class of 2019 commitment for Mitchell and the Cats. The other was Lincoln County star Emma King, a 5-foot-11 wing, who committed last June.
Merrill is rated No. 66 nationally by ESPN and is ranked as the eighth best player at her position by the analysts there.
The Class 5A Player of the Year both her freshman and sophomore seasons at Villa Rica High School, Merrill reportedly had offers from Duke, Georgia Tech, Rutgers, Ole Miss and others.
Bret McCormick of the All-Star Girls Report has Merrill rated as the No. 87 player nationally and said she has a high motor that will fit in at Kentucky under Mitchell.
Merrill is “athletic and strong with an inside and outside game,” said McCormick, who noted that she also rebounds outside of her area well.
ESPN player evaluations list her as an agile stretch four “with deceptive quickness on the perimeter, physical in the paint; rebounds and attacks coast-to-coast in an up-tempo game.”
In her first two seasons at Villa Rica, Merrill averaged 24.1 points, 11.7 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 3.7 steals and nearly two blocks per game. Her junior year stats weren’t available.