South Carolina was able to land an elite prospect for their talented 2019 recruiting class. Zia Cooke, the number seven overall prospect in the espnW HoopGurlz Top 100, has committed to playing for the Gamecocks next season. Significantly, the credentials of South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley were a reason Cooke chose the Gamecocks.
Speaking to Steve Junga of the Toledo Blade, Cooke stated, “What I’ve been telling everybody is ‘Why not be coached by the best if want to be the best?’ She’s actually played the game, she’s won a national championship, and I just felt like it was home for me. We have a great bond with each other. I know I can go to her about anything, and I already feel like I’ve known her for a while. I just knew it was the best school for me. I had the feeling and I went with my gut.”
When she was a junior for Rogers High School in Toledo, Ohio, Cooke averaged 24 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists per game. That year, Rogers was able to win an Ohio state championship. Another key point, Cooke is also a two-time gold medalist with USA Basketball.
It is important to realize that is an exciting talent who continues to improve her game every year she plays. The 5-foot-9 guard is an explosive player who is athletic and has skills of a combo guard. She is difficult to contain off the dribble and can finish plays in traffic. Moreover, Cooke can shoot the mid-range jumper exceptionally and can defend very well.
“I can’t lie, Lousiville and South Carolina were neck and neck,” Cooke declared to Steve Junga of the Toledo Blade. “It was neck and neck for a long time. I just made my decision. I prayed on it and I had to just go with my gut.”
Dawn Staley continues build the recruiting class with the addition of Cooke. Moreover, South Carolina also has the commitment from Olivia Thompson and there are still various players who are still undeclared at the moment with the early signing period beginning on November 14.
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