No. 11/10 Stanford Inks Four Recruits

Nov. 9, 2005

Stanford, Calif. - Jayne Appel, Michelle Harrison, JJ Hones and Melanie Murphy each signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball at Stanford, Cardinal head coach Tara VanDerveer announced today. The quartet will arrive on The Farm next fall as members of the Class of 2010.

'We are ecstatic about the caliber of person and player that Jayne, Michelle, JJ and Melanie are,' noted VanDerveer. 'Great players want to play with other great players, so this is a real compliment to our current team. It's part of our tradition at Stanford to have great young people who want to come here and improve. The way to do that is to play with other great players every day in practice in a competitive environment. The four signeees all bring different talents, but they mesh well with each other. It is an excellent class!'

Appel, a 6-4 center out of Carondelet High School in Concord, Calif., was a Parade and Street & Smith Second-Team All-American as a junior last year. This past summer, she was a participant at the USA Youth Development Festival, an adidas Top-Ten Camp All-Star, an All-Tournament selection at the Nike Tournament of Champions and the MVP of the West Coast Jamboree. Appel was also in the inaugural group of invitees at Nike's Top-Twenty Camp. As a sophomore, she was an honorable mention Street & Smith All-American and was named an Underclass All-Star. Appel has been named the Cal-Hi Sports Division II Player of the Year for the past two seasons and was named to the All-State and All-Junior Teams last year. She averaged 21 points, 15 rebounds and 4.5 blocks per game as a junior, and in her freshman season alone, she broke the school record for career blocks. Appel was also a First-Team All-League selection in water polo last fall.

'Stanford offers the best of both worlds,' noted Appel. 'It has the best basketball and the best academics. I feel like it is where I'm supposed to be. I'll be playing for the best coaches, and that is such a privilege to be able to learn from Tara VanDerveer.'

'We're so excited about Jayne,' added VanDerveer. 'She is one of the best post players in the country and she's in our backyard. We've followed her since she was a young player. She's been to our camp, and we know her family. She's a great shot blocker and a phenomenal passer. She's strong and she rebounds and scores. It's a perfect situation for her to come in and play with Brooke Smith and Kristen Newlin for one year, we're going to be even bigger and stronger inside.'

Harrison is a 6-3 forward from Orem, Utah. She attends Mountain View High School, where she comes into her senior season ranked fourth in blocks in Utah girls basketball history with 243 in her first three seasons. She was invited to the USA Youth Development Festival and was an adidas Top-Ten Camp All-Star in 2005. She has earned Street & Smith All-America honorable mention accolades, adidas All-American honors and has been All-Star team member for the last two years. Entering her senior year, she is a three-time First-Team All-State selection and a three-time Region MVP. As a sophomore, she was the leading scorer in 3A. Harrison was named Utah's 2003 Newcomer of the Year in basketball and was the UWBCA Player of the Year. During her first three years, she has averaged 18.2 points, 10.8 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 3.4 steals, and 5.8 blocks per game. Harrison is also a two-time state high jump champion and finished 9th in the state in an amateur LPGA golf tournament in 2004.

'I'm so excited to come to Stanford,' said Harrison. 'My family always said that I should look at Stanford, but I wanted to make my own decision. Then, as soon as I went on my unofficial visit, I just knew. I took my time to explore my options, but in I knew in my heart that Stanford was right for me. I couldn't ask for more, Tara VanDerveer is such a respected coach in this country and around the world, and I get to play for her. I know that all of the coaches are going to help me improve, and I'm just in awe that I have this opportunity.'

'Michelle is a versatile player,' said VanDerveer. 'She can post up and play outside. She has a really good sense of the game, and she rebounds. She is very competitive and a hard worker. Michelle has high goals for herself and her team and she'll fit really well into our system.'

Hones, a 5-10 point guard from Southridge High School in Portland Ore., was a Street & Smith All-America honorable mention selection and attended the USA Youth Development Festival in 2005. As a junior last year, she earned 4A Second-Team All-State honors and was named to the 4A All-State Tournament First Team, after helping her squad to a perfect 29-0 season and the state title. Her squad has captured the Metro League Championship in each of the last two seasons and Hones earned all-league recognition in her sophomore and senior seasons. Last year, Hones averaged 13.9 points, 5.2 assists, 3.8 steals and 4.2 rebounds per game.

'I chose Stanford for its academics,' said Hones. 'Academics are really big for me, I've strived to do really well in high school and I want to continue that. Stanford has some of the greatest academics in the country and it's on the West Coast, which is important for me so that I can be close to my family. Plus, I know Jillian Harmon, so that will help with the transition. The coaches are really cool and the rest of the girls on the team were really nice. It's going to be great!'

'JJ was the first to commit and we're so excited,' noted VanDerveer. 'She is a traditional point guard - she runs the half-court and is a very heady player. She's a great leader and very vocal. She's tough and a real student of the game. She is an exceptional passer and she runs the floor well.'

Murphy, a 5-9 guard out of Midwood High School in Brooklyn, N.Y., was a Street & Smith All-America honorable mention selection as a junior after averaging 16.6 points, six rebounds, 4.1 assists and 2.3 steals last season. She is a three-time Daily News and Newsday First Team All-Brooklyn selection. In her sophomore and junior campaigns, Murphy was a Daily News First Team All-City honoree and the Newsday Brooklyn Player of the Year. Helped her squad upset JFK in the PSALquarterfinals by converting a three-point play with 5.4 seconds left.

'I had a great time when I visited Stanford and was really comfortable,' commented Murphy. 'I really liked the team, and I think they'll be a lot of fun. It's the right place for me. It wasn't hard [to decide on Stanford even though it's on the West Coast] because I've wanted to go to Stanford since I was in elementary school. Plus I think the change will be a good experience for me.'

'Melanie is an outstanding point guard,' added VanDerveer. 'She can break her opponents down with her dribble and she's very athletic. She has a great first step and she will be a tremendous addition for our team speed. She's a phenomenal passer and really smart. She plays with a purpose.'

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