Kentucky players, coach respond to ESPN’s early leak of NCAA bracket
All four of Kentucky’s most recent Miss Basketball winners — outside of 2019 winner Savannah Wheeler of Boyd County, of course — will be playing in this year’s NCAA Tournament.
Maci Morris, the 2015 winner from Bell County, stars for Kentucky. Former Elizabethtown star Erin Boley (2016) is playing her first season at Oregon after transferring from Notre Dame. And Lindsey Duvall (2017, Bullitt East) and Seygan Robins (2018, Mercer County) are both at Louisville.
Morris is the Wildcats’ second-leading scorer at 14.9 points per game. The 6-0 senior guard also averages 3.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.4 steals and 0.8 blocks for UK (24-7). Morris shoots 44.2 percent from three-point range.
Boley, a 6-foot-2 sophomore forward for the Ducks, is fourth on her team in scoring (13.0 points per game) and rebounding (3.7) while shooting 45.3 percent from three-point range (97-for-214). Boley averaged 12.0 points and 4.7 rebounds in the Pac-12 Tournament. The Ducks (29-4) lost 64-57 in the championship game to Stanford.
Duvall, a 5-9 redshirt freshman guard, has averaged 3.5 points and 7.0 minutes in 23 games for the Cardinals (29-3), who were the ACC Tournament’s runner-up. Duvall is 20-for-48 (41.7 percent) from three-point range. Robins, a 5-10 freshman guard, has averaged 1.8 points in 7.8 minutes in 23 games.
Other top players to watch
Jaelynn Penn and Grace Berger, Indiana: Penn, a 5-10 sophomore guard out of Butler, is the Hoosiers’ second-leading scorer at 13.6 points per game to go with 3.6 rebounds and 1.4 assists. Berger, a 6-0 freshman guard from Sacred Heart, contributes 5.4 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.6 assists for IU (20-12).
Lexi Held, DePaul: A 5-10 freshman guard out of Cooper, she has averaged 8.4 points (fourth on the team) in 15.3 minutes per game in a reserve role for the Blue Demons (26-7). Held is shooting 39.6 percent (40-101) from three-point range. In Big East Tournament wins against Providence, Creighton and Marquette, she averaged 10.0 points and 2.7 assists.
Blair Green, Kentucky: The 6-0 freshman guard from Harlan County is averaging 5.6 points and 2.1 rebounds in 18.5 minutes per game for the Wildcats. That includes shooting 38.1 percent from three-point range and 88.2 percent from the free-throw line. She’s one of three UK players, along with Jaida Roper and Amanda Paschal, to play in all 31 games this season.
Alexis Jennings, South Carolina: The 6-3 senior forward played two seasons at Kentucky (8.9 points and 5.4 rebounds) before transferring to the Gamecocks (21-9). Jennings has averaged 11.2 points and a team-high 6.2 rebounds this season.
More ties to the Bluegrass
Texas A&M: Ciera Johnson is a 6-4 sophomore center who transferred from Louisville. Originally from Texas, she averaged 4.0 points and 2.3 rebounds for the Cardinals in 2016-17. This season, Johnson is fourth for A&M (24-7) in scoring (12.0 per game) and second in rebounding (8.2).
Bucknell: Two Kentuckians play reserve roles for the Bison (28-5), the Patriot League Tournament champions. Ally Johnson, a 5-10 sophomore guard from Beechwood, averages 4.2 points and shoots 40.5 percent from three-point range in 14.8 minutes per game. Marly Walls, a 5-8 freshman guard from Nelson County, contributes 3.3 points and 1.9 rebounds in 12.3 minutes per game.
Kentucky: LaShae Halsel, a 6-0 senior forward out of Warren Central, has scored four points and grabbed two rebounds in 10 games this season. The former walk-on earned a scholarship for her final season.
Louisville: The Cardinals’ roster is packed with Kentuckians. In addition to Robins and Duvall, there’s also 5-7 freshman guard Mykasa Robinson (Ashland Blazer), 5-2 junior guard Jessica Laemmle (Mercy) and 6-1 freshman forward Molly Lockhart (Butler). Robinson has averaged 1.8 points and 1.7 rebounds in 10.9 minutes and has played in 31 of the team’s 32 games. Laemmle has scored seven points and grabbed six rebounds in 22 games. Lockhart is redshirting this season.
Connecticut: Former Kentucky forward Batouly Camara, a 6-2 junior, has averaged 1.6 points and 4.8 minutes in 24 games for the Huskies (31-2), who won their six straight American Athletic Conference Tournament title.
Mercer: Cierra Scott, a 5-9 freshman guard from Sacred Heart, has one point and two rebounds in seven games for the Southern Conference Tournament champions.
UCLA: Lindsey Corsaro signed with Kentucky but got out of her letter of intent and ended up with the Bruins (20-12). The 6-1 freshman guard is averaging 7.0 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.9 assists.
Kentucky teams in the NCAA Tournament
Albany Regional: No. 16 seed Robert Morris (22-10) at No. 1 seed Louisville (29-3), Noon (ESPN2)
Greensboro Regional: No. 6 seed Kentucky (24-7) vs. No. 11 seed Princeton (22-9) at Raleigh, N.C., 11 a.m. (ESPN2)