JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (April 14, 2011) - Head East Tennessee State University women's basketball coach Karen Kemp and her staff announced the signing of two more recruits for the 2011-12 season on Thursday evening as Maria Bond (Macon, Ga.) and Amy Duke (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) have inked their national letter of intent to play for the Lady Bucs this upcoming fall.
Bond and Duke join a stellar class which also includes point guard Brianna Bogard (Georgetown, Texas) as well as local product Cara Bowling (Elizabethton, Tenn.). Overall this class adds a lot of depth and will help contribute to the Lady Bucs' success.
"We are extremely excited to have these two young ladies come play here at ETSU," commented Kemp. "It's rare you get players of this quality in the late signing period, because I really feel they can both come in as freshman and contribute to our success both on the court and in the classroom."
Bond, a 5-foot-10 guard/forward, hails from Northeast High School where she lettered in both basketball and cross country for the Raiders. For her career, Bond not only broke three school records, but she also averaged a double-double as she posted an impressive 21 points and 10 rebounds in four years of play. Bond, the Raiders all-time leading scorer with 1,925 career points, also set school records for three-pointers made in a game (7) and most points scored as a freshman in a single game (27). After averaging more flashy numbers as a senior - 22 points, 12 rebounds and seven blocks - Bond was named Player of the Year in her region, while also guiding the Raiders to the regional championship in both her sophomore and senior seasons.
Not only can Bond produce on the hardwood, but she also ranks tenth out of 153 students in her class and is a member of the National Honors Society. During her four-year stint at ETSU, the Macon, Ga. native will plan to major in biology.
"Maria comes from a very established program in Georgia, which also has a lot of tradition," said Kemp. "I have known her coach (Alvin Copeland) for many years and he does a tremendous job teaching the fundamentals, so Maria will come in and be ready to play. She is a versatile player who can score from the inside and around the perimeter, so that's something we were really looking for. Like Destiny (Mitchell), she's not afraid to crash the boards and is such a competitor. Not only is she talented on the court, but she also excels in the classroom. The end result, Maria knows to focus both on academics and athletics."
Meanwhile, Duke is a 6-foot forward who spent her senior year playing at Blackman High School in Murfreesboro. Duke averaged 10.0 points, grabbed 7.6 rebounds, and forced 2.5 steals for Blackman in her senior season, while also guiding the Blaze to an upset win over Riverdale in the District 7 AAA Finals. The Murfreesboro, Tenn. native netted 17 points in the 40-37 win and was named District Tournament MVP after snapping Riverdale's 55-game winning streak. Duke, who tallied a team-leading 310 points and 236 rebounds for the Blaze, was also selected team Offensive and Defensive MVP, while being tabbed All-Region.
"Amy can give us the 10 to 12-foot jump shot, but she is more comfortable around the basket," Kemp said. "She really came on strong toward the end of her senior season. Fortunately for us, we were able to get on her and she decided to come to ETSU after her visit. With the departure of Latisha (Belcher), she will be counted on to replace her scoring and rebounding."
For more information on Lady Buccaneer hoops, visit www.ETSUBucs.com.