Wisconsin women’s basketball head coach Bobbie Kelsey announced the signing of two high school seniors Wednesday on National Signing Day.
Two post players, 6-foot-4 Malayna Johnson from Montini Catholic High School in Belwood, Ill., and 6-foot-3 Mikey Crall, from Olathe Northwest High School in Olathe, Kan. will join the Badgers as freshmen next season.
Kelsey said she was delighted with her newest class.
“I’m very pleased with this class,” Kelsey said in a statement released by the team Wednesday. “Real posts are hard to find and these two are very skilled. I think they will both work very hard to develop into collegiate players and they’ll do what’s asked of them to help our team.”
Johnson is ranked as the No. 14 post player in the nation and is considered a four-star recruit by ESPN’s high school recruiting outlet. She is a member of the Illinois Lady Lightning AAU team and has won three Illinois high school state championships in as many seasons at Montini Catholic.
Johnson’s older sister Michala is currently a junior on the Wisconsin team. Kelsey envisions Johnson bringing a balanced game to the Badgers.
“Malayna is a tall, lanky, long player who can run the floor,” Kelsey said. “We’ll need her to score on the block for us, run and get rebounds. She has the ability to block shots as well. We’re looking for her to come in and get some easy baskets and rebounds.”
Johnson was also considering offers from Georgia Tech, Kansas State, and Loyola (IL).
Crall plays AAU basketball for the Mokan Eclipse and led Olathe High to a Kansas state championship runner-up finish in 2012. She owns Olathe single-season records in field goal percentage (61 percent), offensive rebounds (79) and blocks (6).
Crall’s basketball knowledge was particularly attractive to Kelsey.
“She’s a big body and a very strong, very smart player,” Kelsey said. “She has a very high IQ and that’s going to help her in basketball — she’s going to catch on very quickly to college basketball. We’re looking for her to contribute right away and help our team.”
The two signees are the first of Kelsey’s class of 2013.