FROM UI SPORTS INFORMATION:
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Christina Buttenham (Hamilton, Ontario, Canada), Chase Coley (Minneapolis), Whitney Jennings (Logansport, Ind.) and Carly Mohns (Brodhead, Wis.) have signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University of Iowa next fall, UI head women’s basketball coach Lisa Bluder announced Wednesday. Iowa’s class is ranked 28th nationally by Blue Star Basketball.
“We are very happy with this recruiting class,” said Bluder. “We feel we addressed our needs, with not only talented players, but with quality people that will blend right into our family.”
Buttenham, a 6-foot forward, attends St. Mary Catholic Secondary School. The Academic Honor Roll student is co-captain of a St. Mary team that finished first in the City Catholic High School League standings and was a finalist in the city championship this year. Buttenham, who scored a team-high 20 points in the title game, has earned first team all-star honors in three high school tournaments thus far during her senior year. She has helped the Crusaders to the OFSAA Triple A or Quad A gold medal in each of the last three years. Buttenham won gold at the Canada Games as a member of the U17 Team Ontario squad, and was selected to the all-star team at the 2013 USJN/Nike 17U National Championships held in Washington, D.C. As a sophomore, Buttenham was the youngest member of the Canadian National U-17 Women’s Basketball Team, which won a bronze medal at the FIBA World Cadette championship in the Netherlands. She scored eight points in the game against Japan to help Team Canada earn a Bronze Medal in Amsterdam.
“Christina is a talented wing player who is a terrific athlete and a great defensive player,” said Bluder. “She is a great competitor that has international experience.”
“I chose Iowa for so many reasons,” said Buttenham. “First, when I came for my unofficial visit and met the coaches and players, I felt very comfortable. I also knew right away that the girls I would have a chance to play with during my four years would be great, both on and off the court. When I stayed with the team on my official visit they were so friendly and welcoming, which made me feel even more confident about my decision. I instantly felt at home, which is important because I am going to be about 11 hours away from my home in Canada.
“The Big Ten Conference is where I have wanted to play ever since I knew I had a shot at playing in the United States. I enjoyed watching them on the court and thought I would be able to fit in right away because their style of play is very similar to my teams in Canada. I love the fan support and the facilities at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Lastly, when I found out that the university has excellent science programs, I was very excited because science is my favorite subject, and I plan to pursue that area of study.”
Coley, a 6-foot-3 forward from Washburn High School, is an ESPN HoopGurlz Top 100 recruit. Coley averaged 20 points, 17.3 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 4.9 steals and 8.8 blocks per game last season. She averaged four and seven blocks, as a freshman and sophomore, respectively. Coley has the state of Minnesota’s top two season block totals, with 255 and 216, in addition to the record for a single game (21).
“Chase is a versatile center who can run the floor and face the basket,” said Bluder. “She is perfect for our system.”
“I really like the coaching staff at Iowa,” said Coley. “They have been together for a long time and are nice. I met a few of the girls on the team, and I liked the vibes I got from them. They have good values and intentions. I fit in with them well; it was comfortable. Those are the kind of people I want to play with.”
Jennings, a 5-foot-5 guard from Logansport High School, became the school’s all-time leading scorer last season. She has 1,778 career points, 498 assists, 264 steals and 282 rebounds, averaging 24.4 points, 6.8 assists, 3.6 steals, and 3.9 rebounds per game during her career. Jennings has led Logansport to a 62-11 record the last three years, including back-to-back undefeated conference championships. The three-time Loganland Player of the Year has earned three-straight all-state honors, earning honorable mention as a freshman, second team as a sophomore, and first team as a junior. In addition to numerous other basketball honors, Jennings is a two-time first team all-district honoree in soccer, scoring 28 goals as a senior. She was the individual sectional singles champion in 2012 and 2013, earning honorable mention all-state honors in tennis. A National Honor Society and Fellowship of Christian Athletes member, Jennings holds a 4.17 grade point average.
“Whitney is the point guard that we need in our system,” said Bluder. “She is a fast-scoring point guard and an exceptional ball handler.”
“Iowa was one of the first schools to recruit me,” said Jennings. “After my first visit, I came home with the feeling that it was where I was supposed to be. The coaches and team made me feel so welcome. It is definitely a family-like atmosphere, which is important to me. It is a great school in a great city, and with Iowa being in the Big Ten, many of the games will be in the Midwest, where my large extended family can see me play. I am very blessed to be able to continue my academic and athletic career at the University of Iowa.”
Mohns, a 6-foot-1 forward from Brodhead High School, is a three-time first team all-conference and first team Beloit Daily News honoree. As a junior, she was named first team all-state and first team Wisconsin State Journal. Mohns has led her team to three-straight conference titles. She compiled 368 points, 266 rebounds, 42 assists, and 85 steals last year, helping her team to a 23-2 record. The 266 rebounds are a single-season school record. Mohns, an Academic Honor Roll student, is a three-time all-conference honoree in volleyball, and a track sectional qualifier in the high jump, discus and shot put.
“Carly is a strong power forward that is a tireless worker and great rebounder,” said Bluder.
“Iowa was my top choice because I like the campus atmosphere and the home feeling I got from it,” said Mohns. “The coaches are nice and welcoming, and Iowa stood out to me compared to the other colleges I visited. The atmosphere of the entire campus is great. Seeing all of the Hawkeye fans made it so much fun. Ever since I was a kid, I dreamed about playing in the Big Ten. Now, I can proudly say I am living that dream, by becoming an Iowa Hawkeye.”
Category: Iowa Hawkeyes women's basketball