It might be a year before she can play, but Arkansas native Kelsey Hatcher will eventually make a huge impact for the SMU women's basketball team. A freshman transfer from Oklahoma State University, Hatcher could end up being the Mustangs best shooter in 2010-11.
"I'm mostly known for being a shooter, so I'm definitely going to bring that. I'm a pretty complete player. I'm a combo guard, so I can play the one or the two position. I just want to go where ever Coach Rompola needs me," stated the transfer to PonyStampede.com on Tuesday night.
Hatcher appeared in 25 games for OSU last season, shooting 28 of 60 from the field and going 16 of 38 from three-point range to record a .421 percentage, second-highest on the team. She has always been know for her outside shooting ability. Her senior year of high school, she made a school season record 69 three-pointers, and shot over 43% from long range during her career.
So what made the former Central Arkansas Christian Mustang decide on the SMU Mustangs after choosing to leave Oklahoma State?
"They were recruiting me out of high school a little bit, so I knew a little bit about the program. I was visiting a little bit with the coaches, and I really liked them a lot. It just felt like it was the place for me," said Hatcher. "I expect great things in the coming years. Coach Rompola has been great. Hopefully I will bring a little something extra to this team. I want to help them get in the tournament. That is every players' dream. I just want to help out wherever I can."
Before her time in Stillwater, Okla., Hatcher was a standout performer at Central Arkansas Christian where she led her team to a 27-5 mark and a berth in the 4A State Tournament, for which she was named an all-state selection as senior. Her efforts earned her a national ranking of No. 2 at the point guard position and No. 24 senior in the nation coming out of high school.
"It will be difficult not playing at first. It's always hard to not be able to play when you want to. It will give me time to catch up on academics, especially with the transfer and going to a school like SMU. I'm hoping that it will be good for me. I will probably come back hungrier than before. Hopefully it will all benefit my game," said Hatcher. "Coming into a new program is a hard thing for freshman to do. This year, I will have a full year to figure it out. I think that will definitely help me out."
Hatcher will use her red-shirt this season and have three years to play on the Hilltop. As a senior, she averaged 24 points per game and ended her career at CAC ranked third on the school's all-time scoring list and also set the school record with 69 made 3-pointers. Hatcher, as a junior, led CAC to its third consecutive state title and was named to the All-State Tournament team. Over her career, Hatcher accrued all-state (2), all-conference (4), and all-district honors.
PonyStampede.com would like to welcome Kelsey Hatcher to the Mustang family.
***Parts of this report came from the SMU Athletic Media Relations Department's Press Release