Kendra Wecker headed to San Antonio

SECAUCUS, N.J. – The Lone Star State got a gem Saturday as Kansas State first team All-American Kendra Wecker was drafted fourth overall by the San Antonio Silver Stars in the 2005 WNBA Draft.

Wecker becomes the highest-ever draft pick in school history, with former Wildcat Nicole Ohlde having been selected sixth overall by the Minnesota Lynx in the 2004 Draft. Tennessee's Shyra Ely (14th) and Oregon's Catherine Kraayeveld (27th) were also selected by the Silver Stars, a franchise which relocated from Utah to San Antonio during the 2003 season. Liberty's Katie Feenstra (8th) will join the trio after the Connecticut Sun made a trade for Margo Dydek and a future first-round pick.

The reigning Big 12 Conference Player of the Year and a three-time All-Big 12 first teamer, Wecker became the first player in school history and second player in league history to record 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in a career. She left her mark as the Big 12 Conference's all-time leading scorer (2,333) and Kansas State's all-time leading rebounder (1,087).

"I am very happy with the pick and the opportunity to play in San Antonio," Wecker said. "I am very excited to work with Coach (Dan) Hughes and his coaching staff. To be one of the top four players drafted is an honor. (Nicole) Ohlde and I are fortunate to have been able to put ourselves in a position to be first-round draft picks these last two years. It says a lot about the Kansas State women's basketball program and where it is going. My family is excited and it is a special day for all us."

All-Big 12 Honorable Mention selection Megan Mahoney was chosen in the third round with the 34th overall pick by the Connecticut Sun. Mahoney finished out her four-year career as Kansas State's all-time career assists leader (589). She is currently rehabing from surgery to her Achilles tendon, which ruptured against eventual national champion Baylor in the Big 12 Conference Tournament championship game on March 12.

"It's been an exciting day," Mahoney said. "I am honored they (Connecticut) took a chance on me with one of their draft picks, despite the injury. To be drafted at the professional level and have an opportunity to play in the WNBA is an awesome feeling and everyone, including my family, is excited for me."

"We are just thrilled to see both Kendra go No. 4 overall and Megan to go in the third round," Kansas State head coach Deb Patterson said. "It has been a great day for the Kansas State women's basketball program and it's a great tribute to each of these young ladies to be selected in this year's draft. Both teams (San Antonio and Connecticut) play a lot like we do and are next level extensions of what our players have experienced at Kansas State.

"I think Kendra, in particular, has found the perfect fit for her. She's got a great system and a coach that will be very good in working with her personally. It's very similar to the opportunity we had hoped for Nicole Ohlde last year when she was drafted by Minnesota, but it happened once again with both Kendra and Megan. Laurie Koehn is also going to have an opportunity to attend training camps as a free agent and tryout with several teams. In two years, to have four players move on with opportunities in the league is extraordinary. We will see over time that each of these young ladies will make a significant impact on their WNBA team and will have long careers in the league."

Wecker and Mahoney become the first Kansas State duo in school history to be drafted in the same year. Both will attend WNBA Rookie Orientation on April 22-23 and team training camp on April 24. The WNBA's ninth season begins on May 21.


Kendra Wecker (2001-05), San Antonio Silver Stars, 4th, 1st Round, 2005

Megan Mahoney (2001-05), Connecticut Sun, 34th, 3rd Round, 2005

Nicole Ohlde (2000-04), Minnesota Lynx, 6th, 1st Round, 2004

Olga Firsova (1998-00), New York Liberty, 13th, 1st Round, 2000

Shanele Stires (1993-95), Minnesota Lynx, 56th, 4th Round, 2000* *Previously played for the ABL's Columbus Quest

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