Women's basketball announces recruiting class

By Doug Fitzgerald published June 6, 2007

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs women's basketball coach Jessika Stratton announced her 2007 recruiting class on Wednesday.

Joining the Mountain Lions for the 2007-08 season will be Jazzmin Awa-Williams, a 5-foot-9 forward from Kailuakona, Hawaii, Mallory Lowe, a 6-foot-1 forward from Bushnell, Ill., Felisha Hamilton, a 5-foot-7 guard from Friendswood, Texas and Kirstin Buttars, a 5-foot-8 forward from Weston, Idaho.

Stratton feels the additions should nicely complement a solid returning core. UCCS returns 10 players, including four starters, from a team that went 8-11 in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play a year ago and narrowly missed qualifying for the playoffs.

Awa-Williams was a four-time all-state selection while playing for Konawaena High School. She won a state championship as a freshman while teaming with returning UCCS forward Nancy Hoist and then won another state title, the only two by a Big Island school since 1989, as a senior.

She was named the HawaiiHoops.com player of the year and Big Island Interscholastic Federation Division I player of the year after averaging 19.1 points per game during the season and 20.3 points per game in the playoffs. She scored 27 points in the Wildcats' state semifinal victory over Iolani and the followed that up with 15 points, nine rebounds and four assists in the championship game win over Punahou.

"Jazzy's an athlete. She's really strong and has a scorer's mentality," said Stratton. "She can score from the inside, she can score from the outside and she's left handed, which adds another dimension to her game."

Lowe averaged 14.7 points and 7.6 rebounds per game for Bushnell-Prairie City/Avon High School. She was a two-time all-state selection by the Macomb Journal and, at 6-foot-1, has the size to create big problems for opponents in the post.

"Mallory has great size and athleticism," said Stratton. "She has a rawness about her that she will be able to be molded into the kind of post player we want her to be."

Hamilton was a second-team all-District 24 selection as a senior at Clear Brook High School while playing at the Class 5A level in the greater Houston Area.

"Felisha has one of the best jump shots I've seen," said Stratton. "Her footwork is spot-on and she's a fantastic on-ball defender. She's very quick, understands the game and was very well-coached."

Buttars averaged 16.6 points and 11.8 rebounds, 3.3 blocked shots per game this past season at West Side High School. She was the HJ News player of the year as a senior, as well as the runner-up 2A Player of the Year in Idaho. She was named all-Valley all four years.
"Kirstin is very strong and physical," said Stratton. "We'll have to transition her from being a post player in high school to being more of a three and that's going to take some time. She definitely has the ability."

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Nancy HoistNancy Hoist40F
Nancy HoistNancy Hoist40F
Nancy HoistNancy Hoist40F
Jazzmin Awa-WilliamsJazzmin Awa-Williams30F
Jazzmin Awa-WilliamsJazzmin Awa-Williams30F
Mallory LoweMallory Lowe34C/F
Mallory LoweMallory Lowe34C/F
Mallory LoweMallory Lowe34C/F
Felisha HamiltonFelisha Hamilton20G
Kirstin ButtarsKirstin Buttars13F
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