The BWSL Richmond program out of Richmond has always enjoyed success on the travel circuit, but 2016 may prove to be a special summer for the organization. The club is enjoying a rise in talent, and that coincides with BWSL Richmond move into the All Star Girls Report Summer League.
“Through all the age groups, I think this is going to be the best year we’ve ever had,” Coach Coats said. “In the past, we’ve had two or three very strong teams and then some solid teams. This year, every team is excellent.
“From top to bottom, we feel very good about our talent level this year. When you have that type of talent, you want to play against the best, and that’s what the Summer League offers. When you have that type of competition, you know the college coaches will be there. Whether they come to watch someone on our team of someone on the other team, it gives everyone enhanced exposure.
“I really can’t imagine being in a better league. At the events last year, we had hundreds of coaches at our games, and they were coaches from all levels. It was a great opportunity to showcase our kids, and that gives them every opportunity at a scholarship.”
Coats described his 10th grade team as “one of the best” in the country, and he noted standouts Shakeria Austin (2018, 6-4, F), McKayla Kestner (2018, 5-10, PG), Rachel Stovall (2018, 6-3, F) and Rochelle Norris (2018, 6-4, P). Austin is currently rated as the No. 20 recruit in her class nationally by the All Star Girls Report, while Kestner is at No. 191, Stovall is at No. 203, and Norris is at No. 163.
“Shakeria is a versatile player who rebounds, blocks shots and scores for us,” Coats said. “She isn’t close to reaching her potential. I think she is going to be an amazing player. McKayla is a freak athlete who can finish above the rim. She is also an outstanding shooter who can hit a NBA step back three.
“Rachel is a Dirk Nowitzki type player. She is an exceptionally gifted player who can shoot the long three and rebound inside. Rochelle is a dominant presence for us down low.”
BWSL Richmond also has a strong 11th grade roster that is highlighted by Emily Maupin (2017, 6-3, F), Alexis Hueston (2017, 6-1, F), Janeen Camp (2017, 6-4, P, No. 194) and Janae Camp (2017, 6-2, PF).
“Emily has the size and skills to play inside, but she also has the athleticism and shooting range to step outside,” Coats said. “Alexis is a jump out of the gym type of athlete when can also compete inside or on the perimeter.
“The Camp twins are both physically very strong, and they both run the floor very well. However, Janeen is more of a true old school post player who all the moves inside. Janae is more of a power forward who plays well facing the basket.”