Daugherty goes for quality and quantity

WOMEN'S HOOPS COACH June Daugherty capped off her first recruiting class at Washington State with the signing of two-time honorable mention All-American Jazmine Perkins, a scoring machine from the Bay Area. Perkins completes a class of seven that will arrive in Pullman next fall. The group features two in-state standouts, a huge center, two playmakers from California and a national AAU champ.

"This is a great recruiting class!," Daugherty said Wednesday – the first day of the early signing period for prospects. "The enthusiasm that our current players, administrators and athletic staff provided throughout the recruiting process was a huge reason for our highly successful signing this year."

Six of the seven players in Daugherty's inaugural Cougar class were identified over the months by analysts at Scout.com and Hoopgurlz.com.

Jazmine Perkins, though, remained a secret until today.

"Jazmine is an elite level guard that is a flat out big-time scorer," Daugherty said. "She brings the complete and entire package when you look at her high level of play on offense and defense. Jazmine is a proven, talented player we will count on to provide a big scoring punch with her outstanding play. We will look forward to utilizing her ability at both the two and three guard positions."

Perkins, a Street & Smith's Honorable Mention All-American in both 2005 and 2006, is rated the No. 112 player in the country by All Star Girls Report. The Berkeley High product also is rated as one of the top 150 players in the country by Dan Olson's Girls Basketball Report.

She isn't the only Bay Area athlete in the class.

There's also Jessica Oestreicher, who stands a whopping 6-foot-8. That type of height in women's hoops is the equivalent to 7-foot or more in men's basketball. She's from Liberty Christian High School in Redding, and is rated as the No. 25 player in the country by bballx.com and was a 2007 honorable mention All-America pick by The Sporting News.

Rated as a three-star recruit by both scout.com and hoopgurlz.com, Oestreicher also plays for Ron Adams' Spokane Stars club team.

"Jessica is an extremely skilled shooter that will give us huge firepower in the pivot position," Daugherty said. "She possesses an amazing shooting touch and has the ability and size to single-handedly change the game. She is also an intelligent young lady that is blessed with size and a strong skill set."

The rest of the impressive class rounds out this way:

Katie Grad, a 5-foot-8 guard from Auburn-Riverside High outside Seattle. Grad also was a 2007 The Sporting News Honorable Mention All-American. "Katie is a talented and complete player that will provide strong and aggressive play at both ends of the court," Daugherty said. "She has the will and talent to defend every guard position on the floor and welcomes the challenge. She is a dedicated multi-sport athlete that has a great work ethic. She is a born leader that will not be outworked, and her experience winning the Washington state title in basketball at Auburn-Riverside will be a big asset to our program."

Lexie Pettersen, a 6-1 forward from Spokane's Shadle Park High – and a teammate of Oestreicher's on the Spokane Stars. Also a Sporting News Honorable Mention All-American last season. "Lexie is a strong, athletic forward with toughness in her game," Daugherty said. "Her ability to play numerous positions will make her a valuable threat on the court in several ways. She is an intense player that works hard each and every possession to get it done for her team, and an accomplished multi-sport competitor that has great passion and competitive fire."

April Cook, a 5-8 guard from Long Beach (Calif.) Poly High. Rated the No. 84 player in the country and given four stars by hoopgurlz.com. Long Beach Poly is the No. 1 high school team in the country. "April is an explosive, athletic guard with a full basketball tool box of skills," Daugherty said. "She is a confident and talented shooting guard from the best high school team in the country. A powerful defender that will stop opponents with her athleticism and defensive ‘shut-down' mentality, she is an incredibly gifted athlete and basketball player."

Danielle Lenoir, a 5-6 point guard from Narbonne High in Los Angeles. Team won the city championship in both 2005 and 2006. A 2007 The Sporting News Honorable Mention All-America selection. "Danielle is a dynamic, versatile and very talented guard that plays beyond her years," Daugherty said. "She has a great feel and understanding for the game. A bright playmaker who sets her teammates up and can score with ease, she has the ‘pit bull' mentality on defense and will enjoy the challenge of defending against the talent-laden Pac-10 Conference opponents."

Rosie Tarnowski, a 6-1 guard/forward from Philadelphia. Rated a three-star recruit by both Scout.com and hoopgurlz.com. Tarnowski plays for Archbishop High. "Rosie is a highly talented, athletic forward that possesses a big-time basketball IQ," Daugherty said. "She will bring valuable championship experience after winning the National AAU basketball title in 2006. Rosie is a big, multi-skilled and accomplished player, and will be a huge asset to the Cougars."

NOTABLE: The Cougar currently have nine players on scholarship, none of them seniors. With a scholarship limit of 15, that means Daugherty will need to free one scholarship to accommodate all seven new recruits. That spot could come from fourth-year junior Sabrina Shired, who is believed to be on track to graduate this spring.


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