AIKEN, S. C. – USC Aiken head
women's basketball coach Mike Brandt, in conjunction with the
athletics department, is pleased to announced the addition of five
student-athletes for the upcoming 2013-14 academic year.
Tiffany Addison, Jasmine Coach, Kate Duff, Mariah Durian and Courtney Mealing will all suit up for the Pacers this season.
Addison is a 5-3 sophomore point guard from Arkansas-Fort Smith. During her freshman season, she played just over 11 minutes per game and shot 41 percent from the three-point stripe.
As a senior at Stratford H.S., she averaged 16 points and six rebounds en route to earning all-state honors. Addison was a three-time all-region honoree and was tabbed the Stratford H.S. Athlete of the Year in 2012.
"Tiffany comes in a small package but will deliver in a big way for us," Brandt said. "She is very tough, strong and hard-nosed. I like that she will step in and take a charge. Tiffany is a good shooter, which is always an added bonus for a point guard. She is transferring in with a 4.0 GPA and it is always nice to get an all-state student-athlete back in South Carolina."
Coach is a 5-9 freshman wing from North Augusta, S.C., where she attended North Augusta H.S. She garnered all-area and all-region honors and was named the team MVP. Coach scored 13.1 points and grabbed 5.8 rebounds per contest.
"Jasmine is going to be a solid addition to our team," Brandt said. "She is a great student and a very good athlete. I think she could develop into a fine player for us."
Duff is a 5-7 freshman that can play the point or shooting guard positions. A native of South Melbourne, Australia, she was a member of the Western Australia U-20 National Team. In six games at the tournament, Duff netted 11 points a contest while adding 3.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.7 steals.
"Kate will be a strong addition to our team," Brandt said. "She has played against very good competition in Australia through the years. Kate is a good hustler, can score from long distance, or drive and pull-up. She is also a good passer and is another tough player that will step in and take a charge. Kate had a Division I scholarship offer, but we were fortunate enough to be able to sign her."
Durian is a 5-11 sophomore forward from Western Oregon University. During her rookie campaign, she posted a team-leading 11.5 points per game while canning 88.7 percent (63-71) of her free throws. Durian also pulled down 4.7 rebounds per game while draining 32 percent (34-106) of her three-point field goal attempts. She was the top-scoring freshman in her conference. Durian's season-best effort was 29 points.
She was a three-time all-league selection at Esperanza H.S. in Yorba Linda, Calif.
"Mariah has the potential to be a great impact player in our conference," Brandt said. "She has a great ‘triple threat' – in that she can post up, attack the basket on the drive, and is an outstanding three-point shooter. Mariah has the added bonus of being a great free throw shooter. Any time a player can average double figures in a strong conference as a freshman, it definitely says something."
Mealing is a 5-9 junior guard who played at Francis Marion for two years. She helped guide the Patriots to the NCAA Tournament and earned third-team all-conference accolades after the 2010-11 season. That year, she averaged a team-best 14.9 points a game and drilled 58 three-point shots. Mealing also totaled two assists and 1.3 steals per contest.
Mealing hit for over 2,000 points in her illustrious career at Strom Thurmond H.S. – and is the school's all-time leading scorer. She had numerous 40-plus point games and had a career high of 48.
"Courtney has already proven that she is a great player in our conference," Brandt said. "I remember recruiting her in high school and saw a game where I think she scored 42 out of the team's 43 points. It was incredible – and now to have her come back and wear the Pacer uniform is going to be special. She has a chance to be one of the biggest impact players in our conference this coming year – and I certainly hope she is."
Brandt led the Pacers to a 22-8 mark last season and to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
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