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Basketball: Gabby Williams selects UConn


1:00 AM, Mar. 30, 2013 EDT

Reed Raiders Gabby Williams brings the ball up the court against the Reno Huskies during their basketball game played on Tuesday afternoon, December 4, 2012 at Reed High School in Sparks, Nevada. / Tom Smedes/Special to RGJ

The plan was to take all five allowable official visits and then sit down take some time to make a decision.

That plan went out the window almost as soon as Gabby Williams set foot in Connecticut early this week.

The standout Reed junior gave a verbal commitment to the UConn women's basketball program Friday morning after she visited the campus on Monday and Tuesday.

"I was expecting to wait until the last second, but why postpone the inevitable?" Williams said Friday night. "After you take a visit you're always hyped up about a school. But I knew UConn was not just a great school, but the right school for me."

Williams previously made official visits to Stanford, Arizona and Arizona State. The 5-foot-11 point guard who missed the second half of this past season and will be out most of next year recovering from surgery on the anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus in her right knee also planned to visit UCLA next month.

"I knew right away that UConn was the place," said Williams, who can sign her letter of intent in November. "I know my family is kind of sad that it is so far away but they are going to support me, and when you're making choices like this you have to be selfish.

"I know if I really dedicate myself to basketball I can be an All-American, especially at a school like UConn. They are going to make me the best I can be."

Williams, the RGJ's All-North player of the year following both her freshman and sophomore seasons, was averaging 28 points, 10 rebounds, six assists and five blocks when she tore her ACL on Jan. 19 against rival Reno High.

"The injury didn't really play a role in it. All the coaches, but especially at UConn, talked to me like nothing happened," said Williams, who still must wear a brace almost two months after surgery but is walking without crutches and said she cannot wait to get back in the gym.

The injury also forced Williams from track this spring. She is the two-time defending 4A state champion in the high jump and as a 17-year-old finished fifth in the Olympic Trials last summer.

Williams previously said she would only accept a scholarship to a school that would allow her to compete in both basketball and track, and that she wanted to redshirt the 2015-16 basketball season to focus on making the U.S. Olympic team for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

She may not be as gung-ho on that plan anymore, either.

"They'll let me do whatever I want," Williams said on UConn. "I still have to decide. I have time."

Williams is the third player in the Class of 2014 to commit to UConn. The Huskies are winners of seven national championships since 1995 and they played in 13 Final Fours since 1991 under coach Geno Auriemma.

That tradition was not lost on Williams, who watched UConn's second-round NCAA Tournament game against Vanderbilt in person Monday.

"I just want to be a part of that legacy and that tradition," Williams said. "I really liked the atmosphere, their style and the pace they play."

Williams' dad, Matt, and sister, Kayla, both played basketball at Nevada.

 

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Reno

Boys Basketball

Rank School Record
1 Elko High School
Elko, NV
9-1-0
2 Lowry High School
Winnemucca, NV
19-2-0
3 Edward C Reed High School
Sparks, NV
21-6-0
4 Galena High School
Reno, NV
7-6-0
5 Reno High School
Reno, NV
10-6-0

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