St. Frances girls basketball star commits to Maryland

by Derek Toney

Angel Reese said Thursday her college decision would come down to two things: Winning a national championship and setting the path for her life off the court.

After months of being courted by every Division I program, the St. Frances Academy girls’ basketball star found what she want is only 40 minutes away. Reese announced her intentions to sign a national letter of intent with the University of Maryland Friday.

“I’ll be staying home,” said Reese, a 6-foot-3 forward, rated as the No. 2 player in the country by ESPN. Reese made the announcement at St. Frances’ “Midnight Madness” festivities in East Baltimore.

Reese selected the Terps over Southern California and Syracuse.

Reese said Terps’ coach Brenda Freese’s personal recruitment of her since 8th grade was a major factor.

“Sometimes head coaches let their assistants build the relationship, but the head coach is the boss and make the moves,” said Reese. “That was important to me.

They have a great journalism program with a lot of connections. Basketball-wise, I’ll be able to play my position.”

Athletic and versatile, Reese’s attributes should be a perfect match for Maryland’s up-tempo style. The first commitment to Maryland’s 2020 class, Reese figures to a major contributor come the 2020-21 season.

Being a short drive up Interstate 95 was another factor for Reese, whose younger brother Julian, a 6-foot-8 junior center/forward for the Panthers’ boys squad, is being recruited by the Terps men. Their mom, Angel Webb, was a standout at Woodlawn and UMBC three decades ago, and aunts Kortni and Kristi were standouts at St. Frances, and are members of the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Highly-touted when she first arrived at St. Frances, Angel Reese has lived up to the expectations. A USA Today All-American last season, Reese averaged 22.6 points and 19.3 rebounds for the Panthers, won a fourth straight IAAM A Conference championship and finished No. 1 in the area.

Reese is looking forward to 4th and final season at St. Frances, which has gone 75-9 the past three seasons. She’s excited about playing in front of family and friends next year in College Park.

“I’m ready to be a Terp,” said Reese.