Truman Womenâ??s Basketball Coach Michael Smith has added five players during the 2012 early signing period.
They include Britney Boland (Waukee, Iowa/Waukee), Chelsea Cross (Champaign, Ill./Centennial), Linnea Schmelzer (Sturgeon Bay, Wisc./Sturgeon Bay), Becca Steins (Ballwin, Mo./Parkway South) and Megan Walsh (Chicago, Ill./Marian Catholic). Boland is a 5-foot-10 inch forward that was part of a Waukee High School team that finished 20-6 last season and enters the upcoming year as the fifth ranked school in Iowaâ??s largest class (5A).
Boland averaged 11 points and eight rebounds as the Warriors advanced to their fifth straight state tournament and advancing to the state semifinals.
She was named to the Central Iowa Metro League all-conference team, earned all-district honors and was a third-team choice all-state selection. Coach Smith on Boland: â??A lot of people missed out on Britney as she took the summer off, we are glad she chose Truman and comes from a good high school program that has been in the state tournament final four the past two seasons.
She has a knack for rebounding and will be one of our better three point shooters.â?? Cross is a 5-foot-11 inch post player that averaged 11 points and seven boards for Champaign,â??s Centennial High School as a junior.
She was an all-conference, all-area and was selected to two all-state teams.
The Chargers were 25-6 last season and have won 20 or more games the last three years. Coach Smith on Cross: â??Chelseaâ??s motor is always going in the post, she never stops working hard.
She plays much taller than she is and is not afraid to get physical.
We are glad sheâ??s on our team, as an opposing coach I wouldnâ??t want to play against her.â?? Schmelzer is a 5-foot-8 inch guard who was an all-Packerland conference and all-area choice as a junior.
She averaged 14 points and six rebounds while shooting 47% from beyond the arc for the Clippers as a junior. Coach Smith on Schmelzer: â??Linnea is a versatile guard that can play the 1 or 2 position for us; she has one of the quickest releases Iâ??ve ever seen.
She is going to catch a lot of people by surprise with her quick first step off the dribble.
There is no doubt her best basketball is ahead of her.â?? Steins, a 6-foot forward from Parkway South High School in St. Louis averaged 16 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks her junior season to earn all-Suburban West Conference honors.
The Patriots were 15-14 last season and won a district championship. She was honorable-mention all-conference her sophomore season.
Coach Smith on Steins: â??Becca brings a great IQ to the game, she has the ability to step out on the perimeter or post up on the block for us and has great passing skills.
She will fit in well in our system.â?? Walsh is a 6-foot-1 inch post player who was named a preseason top 50 player in the Chicago area by the Sun-Times, earned all-conference and all-area honors as a junior.
She averaged 11 points and eight rebounds for the Spartans that finished 22-12 last season.
The last three seasons, Marian has a record of 78-25 while competing in the largest class in Illinois. Coach Smith on Walsh: â??When I first watched Megan, the thing that impressed me was her toughness and work ethic in the paint.
She will bring more of a power post to our program, plays in a good high school program that will prepare her for the next level.â??
Courtesy Truman State University