WHEELING - Wheeling Jesuit women's basketball coach Debbie Buff enters her second season with an outstanding inaugural recruiting class. Buff added nine student-athletes to the Cardinals returning roster and plans to have a strong showing in the 2012-13 season.
''I'm thrilled with our initial recruiting class,'' Coach Buff said. ''Our staff worked tirelessly to attract a talented group of student-athletes which complements our style of play and determination in the classroom.''
The 2012 recruiting class is headlined by 5-foot-9 combo guard Jamie Sobczak from Perrysburg, Ohio. The Central Catholic High School standout averaged 18 points per game and earned several postseason accolades. She was named first team All-District, third team All-Ohio, All-Blade Top 25 and TRAC first team while maintaining a 3.7 GPA.
Jaila Bryant, a 5-9 combo guard from Pickerington, Ohio, will also contribute to the offense. The North Pickerington graduate earned first team All-Central District and District 11 which was accompanied with a third team all-state award. The District 11 All-Star also garnered second team All-Metro while being named to the Super 12 Team. Bryant graduated with Honor Roll honors and a 3.1 GPA.
Breanna Butler, a 5-9 shooting guard from Oak Hill, Ohio, brings a dynamic presence to the offense. In her four year career, she led Oak Hill High School to a 96-8 record while recording 1,480 career points. Butler was two-time All-Ohio, two-time District Player of the Year, two-time first team All-District, two-time SOC first team and SOC Player of the Year. She made appearances in the North/South and Ohio/Kentucky All-Star games. Off the court, Butler was a four-year Honor Roll member and earned valedictorian of her class with a 4.0 GPA.
Shooting forward Taylor Lubinsky (5-10) is an Irwin, Pa., product who contributed 800 points and 500 rebounds during her four-year career at Hempfield High School. She was selected to the 2012 Pennsylvania Roundball Classic, the Tribune Review's Terrific 10 while securing an All-Section Quad A award. In addition to the success on the court, Lubinsky excelled in the classroom with 3.9 grade point average.
Rachel Smetzler, a 5-5 point guard from Clyde, Ohio, is a three-time first team All-District and two-time first team all-conference player. The Clyde High School team captain earned all-state Honorable Mention accolades during her senior season and boasted 3.7 GPA.
The Cardinals also made their presence in West Virginia by signing Clarksburg resident Jalan Brown. The 5-9 shooting forward from Robert C. Byrd High School had a stellar career as a four-year starter. She was a four-time All-West Virginia Honorable Mention selection, fFirst team Big Ten, all-county selection and a member of the Nike & Cincinnati USJN All-Star team. In the classroom, Brown earned a 3.5 GPA.
Jesuit added a versatile combo guard in Delani Stopp from Wickliffe, Ohio. The 5-7 Lake Catholic prospect was the News Herald Player of the Year, MVP of the team as its captain. Stopp was recognized twice as a first team North Coast League player and first team All-District and finished her high school with a 3.3 GPA.
Rounding out the Cards incoming class are two local talents, Krista Crawshaw and Katie Fry.
Crawshaw is a 5-11 center form Wheeling Park where she was the team captain of the Patriots and earned OVAC Honorable Mention honors and a position on the OVAC All-Star team while achieving a 4.3 grade point average.
Fry is a 5-4 shooting guard from Bellaire. The four-year letterwinner was a team captain during her senior campaign who 16 points per game. Fry was a two-time Buckeye 8 Honorable Mention, first team All-District and first team All-OVAC player. ''All of these players share unique qualities that can take our program to the next level,'' Coach Buff said. ''Their love, passion and dedication for the game are perfect for the direction our program.''