Palo Alto Weekly

Sports - April 9, 2010

More hoop help on the way

Although Stanford women basketball seniors Jayne Appel and Ros Gold-Onwude are leaving, their replacements will come to The Farm with similar high expectations.

Chiney Ogwumike is the top prize of the recruiting class but the two guards coming in, Sara James and Toni Kokenis, could make an important difference in the Cardinal hopes to reach a fourth consecutive Final Four.

Chiney Ogwumike was named the National Player of the Year by Max Preps, Gatorade and McDonald's. At 6-foot-2, she has the same abilities of a Kayla Pedersen in that she can play inside or on the perimeter. She's also more athletic than Pedersen, which adds another dimension to her game.

Chiney, Nkeke's younger sister, averaged 22.3 points, 8.5 rebounds and 3.2 steals per game while being double- and triple-teamed as a senior at Cy-Fair High in Texas. She led her team to the state title.

Kokenis (5-10) averaged 19.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 3.6 steals per game her senior year at Hindale Central in Illinois, where she became the career scoring leader, boys and girls, with 2,028 points.

James (5-11) has played every position and helped Oak Ridge (California, not Tennessee) to a state Division I championship last month, considered one of the biggest upsets in the history of the event.

James averaged 34.0 points, 7.0 assists, 7.0 rebounds and 6.0 steals as a senior.

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