McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

March 16, 2014

Former Lady Buff moves onto Division I

From submitted reports
Submitted report

McALESTER — Murray State College sophomore LaShanda Green has signed on to play college basketball at the next level.

The former Lady Buff has signed to play with the University of Texas-Arlington. She heads to play for Krista Gerlich and the Mavericks in the fall.

Green, the daughter of Terry and Sherry Green of McAlester, graduated from McAlester High School. Texas-Arlington is an NCAA Division I school, making the Green the first Lady Buff to play for a Division I school since Jaci Bigham played for Oral Roberts University from 2009-13.

Green will graduate from MSC in May with an associate of science. Her future plans are to pursue a master of science in kinesiology.

Green said she feels UT-Arlington is a good fit.

“I chose to play at UTA because after visiting the campus, the team, and the coaching staff and looking more into the campus, that school just seemed to stand out to me more than any of the others,” Green said. “I could just see myself being there and really enjoying it. Also, the coaching staff was a big thing for me. I love all of the coaches there.”

MSC head women’s basketball coach Phil Daniel said Texas-Arlington will be looking for Green to start playing right away.

“I think she’ll probably start right off the bat if she’s healthy,” Daniel said. “I think that’s what they are expecting, for her to be an impact player right off the bat.

“I wouldn’t expect anything less of her. She’s just that kind of player.”

In 2010, Green was a part of the McAlester girls’ basketball state championship team and was awarded MVP of the state tournament. In 2012, she was a part of the Oklahoma Coaches Association, Oklahoma Girls Basketball Coaches Association, and Oklahoma Indian all-state teams, and she was a McDonald’s All-American nominee.

“Moving on and playing at the next level has been a goal of mine for as long as I can remember, so I am more than excited,” Green said.

“However, it’s kind of nerve-wracking at the same time because it is about to be so different. But I am more than ready!”

Daniel agreed. He said Green has shown her character in the two years she’s been at Murray State.

Both seasons Green has been inflicted with injuries that aren’t career-threatening, but extremely painful.

“Shanda hasn’t played pain-free the entire two years she’s been here,” Daniel said. “This year she struggled with plantar fasciitis, and I left her playing time up to her. Only she knew if she could play through the pain. She played, and did her job.”